With much of Australia yet to be explored for mineral wealth, Labor’s commitment to support exploration will unlock more prosperity for our regional communities and a stronger future for our world-class minerals companies.
Demand for our minerals will also grow through meeting the needs of new industries that deliver transportation, low emissions energy, healthcare, infrastructure and communications technologies to growing markets in Australia and our region.
It is important, however, that policies to promote the development of downstream sectors such as battery manufacturing promote the competitiveness of our existing minerals and energy industries.
Building productivity through greater funding of universities and vocational education will help the Australian minerals sector build the workforce of the future. This will require more highly skilled workers able to adapt to the challenges of automation and new technology in our leading edge, innovative minerals industry.
Australians seeking a better future in our regions will benefit from a renewed focus on TAFE, which will provide enhanced opportunities for apprentices such as electricians, boilermakers and fitters and turners.
This will also provide upskilling and reskilling opportunities for older workers and those moving between careers who will be an important part of the minerals workforce of the future.
MCA supports Labor’s commitments on mining exploration, engineering scholarships and a stronger emphasis on skills and training.
MCA also urges Labor to ensure any proposed changes to labour hire rules encourage the responsible use of labour hire and service contracting by the minerals industry.
Our minerals companies need flexibility in employment practices to continue to deliver attractive salaries and working conditions for the industry’s changing workforce.