By Tony Moore, The Sydney Morning Herald

Wealthy businessman and Fairfax MP Clive Palmer wants to back the bid to bring Australia's sixth undersea data communications cable into the Sunshine Coast and stop Australia's “brain drain”.

Fairfax Media understands it would cost a consortium around $200 million to bring a sixth undersea submarine internet cable to the Sunshine Coast.

Mr Palmer said while he had not personally been briefed on the Sunshine Coast bid, his staff had and his company Minerology supported the Sunshine Coast proposal.

“Our company expressed an interest in supporting it – that is my company, separately, Minerology – but politically, we had raised it initially,” he said.

“We'd said there would need to be a consortium of companies and federal and state governments working together, because we saw it as having a lot of jobs potential.”

Australia's five existing submarine cables – four into Sydney and the fifth into Perth – carry around 98 per cent of Australia's international internet traffic.

The existing east coast submarine cables near New South Wales are classed “as crowded”.

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