Record jobs and sales in WA’s resources sector

  • $22 billion increase in mineral and petroleum sales in 2019-20
  • A record 135,000 people employed in WA’s resources sector
  • Western Australia’s resources industry experienced record sales of $172 billion in the 2019-20 financial year, according to statistics released by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety.

    Iron ore sales reached a record $103 billion on increased output and an eight-year price high.

    Gold sales also soared to an all-time high of almost $16 billion, with prices averaging more than $2,300 per ounce.

    Mineral exploration expenditure hit $1.7 billion, an increase of 17 per cent from $1.4 billion in 2018-19.

    Oil sales increased to $2.6 billion on higher volumes, despite lower prices across the first half of 2020, while nickel sales recovered to more than $3.1 billion, a four-year high.

    A record average of 135,000 people were employed in the resources sector during 2019-20, up from 128,374 the previous year. Iron ore and nickel construction activities accounted for most of the growth, while exploration employment also increased 12 per cent.

    Almost $19 billion was invested in WA’s resources sector, up from $17 billion in 2018-19.

    This represents the first year-on-year increase in mining and petroleum investment since the 2012-13 iron ore and LNG boom. There are currently more than $100 billion worth of projects in the pipeline.

    For more information, visit https://dmp.wa.gov.au/About-Us-Careers/Latest-Statistics-Release-4081.aspx

    As stated by Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston:

    “Creating jobs is the McGowan Government’s number one priority, so it’s encouraging to see employment continuing to grow in the resources sector.

    “These record results underpin the importance and resilience of the resources sector as WA recovers from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “It is particularly pleasing to see strong growth in exploration expenditure, which has been achieved despite the difficulties caused by the global pandemic.

    “Maintaining our support of the State’s mining and petroleum industries is a key part of the McGowan Government’s Recovery Plan to keep WA in a strong economic position.”

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