30/07/2009 - 00:00

Job growth to 2020: CME

30/07/2009 - 00:00

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THE Chamber of Minerals and Energy Western Australia has joined fellow resources industry bodies across the country in affirming expected strong demand for labour in the sector in the coming decades.

THE Chamber of Minerals and Energy Western Australia has joined fellow resources industry bodies across the country in affirming expected strong demand for labour in the sector in the coming decades.

This week, the CME echoed suggestions from The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA), The Minerals Council of Australia and resources industry careers website, Mineblogger, that tens of thousands of jobs will be created in the future.

As part of a joint industry government study, the CME concludes future labour demand driven by the minerals and energy industry will continue to create labour shortages, with a potential need for an additional 26,000 employees by 2013.

Despite the general weakening in demand resulting from the current financial crisis, the CME's 'Growth Outlook Study' suggests positive growth will occur to 2020.

The study says direct minerals and energy sector labour demand is expected to peak in 2012 at about 38,000, driven by the concurrent timing of a number of major construction projects in the state.

The highest growth region is expected to be the Mid West, with a demand for 60,000 people in 2014 over 2007 levels, followed by the Pilbara with 14,000 and Goldfields/Esperance with 3,000.

Research undertaken by the Mineblogger website pointed to an additional 60,000 new jobs across more than 30 oil and gas, and mining projects either under way or in the pipeline in Australia.

APPEA reiterates that some 60,000 jobs across Australia will be created in the coming decade.

And The Minerals Council of Australia forecast that a further 80,000 people will be needed by 2020 to maintain Australia's market share of global production.

Up until the last quarter of 2008, 142,000 people in Australia's workforce were directly employed in resources, an increase of more than 55,000 jobs over the past five years.

Mineblogger creator and former recruitment manager with BHP Billiton, Jody Elliott, said the Gorgon project would require more than 6000 workers with three years of construction potentially starting at the end of the year.

And Woodside's Pluto project will initially employ about 3,000 people, boosted by 1,000 of its own workforce when operational in 2010.

"The other major one under way is the Worsley Alumina efficiency and growth project; they have a total of 4,000 jobs across its two year construction phase," she said.

Ms Elliott said CITIC Pacific's iron ore project would provide more than 4,000 jobs, while BHP Billiton's rapid growth project stages five and six would have about 2,000 construction positions.

"The other (projects) I haven't mentioned will be Oakajee Port and Rail and Gindalbie Metals with thousands of jobs also, but they are staying very quiet," she said.

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