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Mining’s Contribution to Australian Employment

Posted: 14/06/2012 5:00:00 AM by Kyla Jones, Site Director, AMMA Mining Oil and Gas Jobs


New employment figures out last week from the ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics) clearly outline the impact the mining sector – as well as the rest of the resources industry – is having on employment figures. While we often speak about the skills shortage on this blog, it’s important to remember just how many Australians are currently employed in the industry that’s driving the thriving economy.

Putting things in perspective

One thing to remember is that mining and related industries (rail transport, heavy and civil engineering, construction) employ less than 4% of all employed persons across the three main mining states of New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia.

The public, health service, professional and scientific industries, by comparison, employ nearly 29% of the employed population – nearly seven times as many people that work in mining.

Trade related industries such as agriculture, fishing and forestry; manufacturing; accommodation and food services; and education and training industries employ less people than before but still hovers around 7% of the workforce, almost double the number working in mining.

Big decreases in unemployment

What was remarkable about the news last week is the marked increase in the mining sector of more than 44% over the same period last year. This change, in turn, has shown a reduction in unemployment in the same states by over two-thirds in the last 15 years.

What this means for jobseekers

Clearly the Australian resources industry is in need of professional workers and skilled trades people. Acquiring the skills and experience for these occupations and making a commitment to living in a mining state, is a sound strategy for long-term employment and career planning.

If it seems like EVERYONE is working in mining; they’re not. The industry is just making a lot of noise about the jobs they have available.

For more information about working in mining, oil and gas, or energy, check out our Careers and Industry Guide. You’ll find everything you need to know about mining, oil and gas jobs.

Were you surprised to find out how small the mining workforce is?

Get more careers advice:

  • Subscribe to our blog. We’re publishing new information every day about employment in the Australian resource industry.
  • If you’re looking for a job in mining, energy or oil and gas, make sure you visit our industry jobs board where we only advertise real jobs by real employers.


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