Australia’s mining industry will require around 21,000 new onsite
operational employees by 2024 in order to meet the demand for
The forecast was made by the 2019-2024 Mining Workforce report
released by the Australian Resources and Energy Group,
It found that 57 projects worth $41 billion, either ‘committed’ or
considered ‘likely’ by the Australian Government’s Department of
Industry, will demand 20,767 on-site operating employees by
The forecast occupational breakdown includes 8660 mining plant
operators, 2847 heavy diesel fitters and 4180 engineers,
technicians, geologists and related roles to name a few.
AMMA chief executive Steve Knott said understanding future
workforce demand was critical to assisting industry with workforce
planning strategies, and to assist government in directing skills
and labour mobility initiatives.
“Australia’s mining industry is facing new workforce demand at
levels not seen since the previous investment and construction
‘boom’,” Knott said.
“While demand across the next four years will be far steadier than
the unprecedented growth we saw in 2005-2012, it is clear that
securing the pipeline of skills to support mining project growth to
2024 will be a significant challenge.”
Knott urged the mining industry to work collaboratively with
government in order to avoid a scenario where mining projects were
delayed by skills shortages, or competing for engineers, trades and
State-by-state analysis shows Western Australia will have the
greatest new mining workforce demand, with 30 projects requiring
10,679 operational employees by 2024.
Iron ore accounts for 29 per cent of this forecast growth, with
lithium, gold and copper also strongly represented.
Queensland will require 5714 new mining employees, driven by a
number of large coal projects coming online over the next four
Importantly, AMMA’s report does not factor in the 153 prospective
mining projects considered by the Department of Industry as
‘possible’ to proceed over this timeframe.
“AMMA was determined for this forecast to be highly conservative,”
“We have put forward the minimum likely number of new on-site
workers our industry will demand over the next four years, based on
projects already committed or very advanced in feasibility