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WA mining and resources contribute $99 billion to Australian economy

An analysis of 71 Western Australian resources sector companies found the State’s mining, energy and contractor industries contributed a direct $98.98 billion to Australia’s economy in 2021-22 and directly employed more than 69,000 full-time Australians.

The results aggregate responses from the Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia’s (CME) annual survey of ordinary member companies, supplemented with data from public company reports. 

CME Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Tomkinson said the data provided a telling snapshot of the day-to-day impact of the WA mining and resources sector to economies and communities across the country.

“It’s remarkable to see the efforts of an entire industry over a year boiled down to just the raw numbers. Whichever way you look at the figures, the contribution that our industry makes to both WA and the nation is enormous,” Ms Tomkinson said.

“It should also be noted that these results come hot on the heels of the covid-19 pandemic at its height of daily new confirmed cases, and this economic contribution data reflects the immense efforts undertaken by the industry to adapt and operate under unprecedented and challenging conditions.

“The results of this survey capture about 83 per cent of our members’ direct contribution, however, the ‘total’ sector-wide figure to the broader economy is likely to be well in excess of the $99 billion figure.”

The annual economic factsheets produced out of the data show:

  • The direct contribution by the 71 CME member companies to the WA economy was more than $57 billion.
  • More than $47 billion was spent by the companies on purchasing goods and services from about 14,000 businesses, and financially supporting more than 1,000 community organisations and 75 local governments across Australia.
  • More than $10.7 billion in wages and salaries was paid to more than 69,200 full-time Australian workers. These member companies also employed a further 19,502 full-time on-site contractors.
  • About $11.7 billion was contributed in State Government payments, with more than $28.9 billion contributed to the Federal Government in taxes.

The majority of Perth’s workers in mining and resources residing in the metropolitan region live in Wanneroo, while on a state-wide level, the biggest hotspot for our industry’s workers is Mandurah.

The analysis also found supply chain spending by the 71 companies created an additional 493,235 full-time jobs and $78.37 billion in gross value add to the Australian economy. Some of this value add is created through the sector’s demand for construction, exploration, mining support, financial and other goods and professional services.

It is estimated through all this activity, these companies helped contribute to 7.7 per cent of gross regional product to Australia’s economy.

As data collected through CME’s survey process is provided on a postcode basis, the economic contributions of these companies can also be narrowed down to the major development commission region boundaries in WA, as well as Upper House and Federal electorates in WA.

“Both the direct and indirect contributions of CME’s member companies spread far and wide throughout communities around WA and, indeed, across Australia,” Ms Tomkinson said.

“With more than $148 billion of projects under development or proposed in the WA resources sector pipeline, these types of contributions should continue to flow as projects kick off and operate business-as-usual.

“We’re also watching closely as economies around the world increase their uptake of digital technologies and continue their efforts to decarbonise and transition to net zero emissions – a movement which WA in particular stands to enormously benefit from thanks our abundance of critical minerals.”

The data collected and analysed from 71 member companies covers more than 100 operational sites and a dozen commodities across the State, representing 83 per cent of the WA resources sector by production.

To view the factsheets, click here

Media contact: Fraser Beattie

0421 505 557