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Published on February 5th, 2012 | by john.weir

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Australian mining looks to hi tech mining boost for jobs

Australia’s booming mining industry is looking to technological advances to help drive growth in jobs across the country.

An independent report, by consultancy firm BAEconomics, concludes that concerns about a reduction in employment in the mining industry as a result of automated mine sites are misplaced. Some analysts have been concerned that the introduction of new technologies in mining would lead to fewer jobs – however John McGagh, head of innovation at Rio, said the report highlighted the increasingly complex challenges being faced by the mining industry.

“Our industry is facing maturing ore bodies, fewer tier-one deposits, increasingly complex geographies and labour shortages, and the report details how innovation in autonomous technologies can play an important role in addressing these challenges,” he said.

The report outlines that Australia’s mining sector is on the cusp of a step-change, with technological advancements to transform the way the industry operates.The technology is mostly being developed in Australia, becoming the world leader in that field. It is creating spin-off opportunities and has seen the emergence of a new sector — mining technology services and equipment (MTSE).

“While some specific roles are likely to disappear over time, employment overall would be expected to grow faster while Australia maintains its competitive position,” said the authors, Brian Fisher and Sabine Schnittger.”Relocating challenging new jobs to more desirable locations will furthermore broaden employment opportunities and attract more talent in addition to easing overall labour constraints in the Australian economy.”

Looking for a job in Australia ? Come to the UK’s biggest and best emigrate show, Down Under Live, in London, Birmingham and Edinburgh, in February 2012.

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