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Published on April 17th, 2012 | by john.weir

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Investment boost means more jobs in Western Australia

Western Australia is set too receive a $300 million boost to create yet more job opportunities in the state.

Mining giant Rio Tinto plans to invest more than A$300 million (US$310 million) to expand and renew the town of Wickham as part of efforts to significantly raise iron ore production in the state’s remote Pilbara region.Wickham will house the workers needed for Rio Tinto to reach its goal of 183 million metric tons in export capacity from Cape Lambert Port in 2015 from around 80 million tons currently, Western Australia Premier Colin Barnett said. The town’s population is expected to climb to more than 2,600 from 2,000, he said.

Rio has invested more than A$200 million in a similar renewal effort in Pannawonica, also in the Pilbara, that is nearing completion.Rio Tinto plans to build 212 company-owned houses in a new residential subdivision in Wickham, 60 kilometers east of Karratha, and to upgrade the town’s power, water, sewerage and communications infrastructures, the company said in a separate statement. It will also build around 200 motel-style accommodation units, it said.

Rio Tinto already is in the final stages of a A$22 million investment in new sporting facilities, including basketball courts, indoor cricket nets and a gymnasium.The company’s efforts are intended to help it reach its goal of raising production capacity in the Pilbara to 283 million tons a year in 2013 and 353 million tons in 2015, it said.

Job opportunities in Western Australia are booming. Come to Down Under Live in Birmingham May 2012 and meet the WA Government.

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