The resources sector has been creating one job every hour and investing close to $1 million every hour in Queensland, new figures show.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said the latest ABS data confirmed the sustained commodity price recovery and larger production volumes were underpinning the State’s economy.
“In 2017-18 capex by resource companies in Queensland was $8.6 billion (up 4 per cent) or $23.6 million every day and the sector created more than 8400 extra jobs in 12 months – the equivalent of one new job every hour,” Mr Macfarlane said.
“Our sector accounts for 35 percent of all private capital expenditure in Queensland ($24.6b) and it’s the first year we’ve seen an increase in mining capital expenditure since 2013-14.
“Resource companies are committed to spending locally, with Rio Tinto spending over $1.5 billion on goods and services with Queensland suppliers at its Amrun bauxite project near Weipa (pictured above).”
He said the challenge ahead for the sector would be to find the right people with the right skills.
Exploration spend on the rise
New figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics have also given the resources industry’s exploration sector reason to smile.
The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) said total Australian mineral exploration expenditure rose 28.4 per cent ($124.7 million) to $563.4 million in the June quarter 2018 and the total metres drilled rose 44.3 per cent.
Nationally greenfields mineral exploration expenditure jumped by 37.1 per cent ($54 million) and expenditure on brownfields exploration expenditure rose 24.1 per cent ($70.7 million).
“Mineral exploration is the lifeblood of the mining industry. The jump in exploration will lead to longer mine lives and hopefully future mines,” AMEC chief executive officer Warren Pearce said.
“Exploration rose in all jurisdictions, with Western Australia and Queensland particularly notable.”
In Queensland, exploration expenditure increased by $13 million, a 24 per cent growth quarter on quarter.