The McGowan Government has welcomed local Austin Engineering’s milestone achievement of delivering 1,000 locally manufactured iron ore truck bodies to Rio Tinto.
In a partnership that first commenced in 1988, Rio Tinto has purchased approximately $300 million worth of equipment from Austin Engineering.
With 100 per cent local content in the truck bodies, the manufacturing program supports hundreds of Western Australian jobs.
The milestone comes as the McGowan Government’s continued efforts drive more initiatives as part of its WA Jobs Plan to capitalise on WA’s manufacturing sector.
This has resulted in State Government investment of $126 million into the following programs:
- critical iron ore rail wagon parts;
- stand-alone power systems;
- wind turbine manufacturing; and
- precursor cathode materials manufacturing for battery industries.
Last month, the McGowan Labor Government welcomed Rio Tinto’s commitment to use local suppliers to build iron ore railcars for its Pilbara mining operations.
Rio Tinto’s announcement includes a commitment to the initial purchase of 50 iron ore railcars, followed by an ongoing commitment of 10 ore cars a year for at least the following five years.
The announcement reflects the State Government’s commitment to boost local manufacturing and secure an ongoing pipeline of WA jobs through its establishment of the Iron Ore Railcar Wagons Manufacturing and Maintenance Action Group.
Austin Engineering’s Kewdale facility is currently receiving its first manufacturing upgrade, with Austin Engineering investing heavily into the facility to implement new advanced manufacturing processes.
Austin Engineering’s Kewdale facility is one of two of the company’s major manufacturing sites in the Asia-Pacific region.
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“Congratulations to Austin Engineering and Rio Tinto for their 30 year partnership, which has now seen 1,000 WA-made truck bodies roll off the production line.
“It is fantastic to see our major resources companies investing heavily in our local manufacturing businesses, which is incredibly important for local jobs.
“As part of our WA Jobs Plan, we’re investing in initiatives that bolster local jobs and local content to reinforce our strong manufacturing sector.
“The State Government is committed to creating more opportunities for Western Australian manufacturers to help boost our economy and create WA jobs harnessing local skills and training.”
As stated by State Development, Jobs and Trade Minister Roger Cook:
“Our local manufacturing sector is going from strength to strength, and today’s milestone is just another indication of what WA is capable of.
“Austin Engineering has forged a relationship with Rio Tinto that should be the envy of the industry, and we’re encouraging other key players to strike while the iron is hot and choose WA manufacturers and invest locally.”