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Published on September 26th, 2011 | by john.weir

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Skilled workers in demand to help mining boom in Australia

Australia’s total mining workforce is tipped to more than double in the next 20 years, from an estimated 693,000 to 1.45 million Australia-wide, with three times as many jobs being created outside the mines.

Already Australia’s mining workforce accounts for 7% of total job creation, and job growth in mining and mining-related work is forecast to increase by more than a 100% by 2031, according to the Department for Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Over 271,000 people are employed in the mining industry in Western Australia alone.
The Minerals Council of Australia has estimated that for every worker employed directly by mining, a further three workers are indirectly employed in mining-related roles and services.

Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show 226,000 people are directly employed in mining in Australia, of which 66,800 are employed in Queensland’s burgeoning resources sector.

Queensland Employment, Skills and Mining Minister Stirling Hinchliffe says $80 billion in new projects have just been approved across the state.
“That translates to 38,000 construction and operational jobs in the Queensland resources sector between now and 2014-15.” Mining giant Rio Tinto Coal Australia is currently recruiting skilled workers for 180 positions across its mining interests in Queensland and New South Wales.The growth in mining is also opening up related employment opportunities in Queensland, with an estimated 7500 engineering fabrication tradespeople required across the state, and only 2930 apprentices currently in training.

Jim Devine from the Queensland Resources Council says there is nothing in history to rival the projects that are going ahead in Queensland.
“There is $45 billion in four LNG projects [in Gladstone] alone,” he says.This equates to 18,000 construction jobs to build the LNG plants and pipelines which will then convert to 5000 to 6000 operations jobs once the plants are online.

From AAP

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