The minerals industry will need around 18,000 more skilled workers through to 2018, according to the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency’s (AWPA) latest report released today.
The Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) says the report confirms that mining will continue to expand in the years ahead – as the sector moves from the construction to production phase of the millennium mining boom – providing a critical boost to the domestic economy.
The AWPA’s Resources Sector Skills Needs 2013 report shows that minerals industry operations will need around 18,000 more skilled workers through to 2018 – as the sector moves from the construction to production phase of the millennium mining boom.
In a statement the MCA said, “The minerals industry has strong skills foundations in place and welcomes AWPA’s acknowledgement of the sector’s focus on the skilling and development of its workforce.”
The MCA claims that the resources sector:
- spends 5.5 per cent of payroll on training activities, with one in twenty employees being an apprentice or a trainee
- contributes to higher education outcomes, with the MCA-operated Minerals Tertiary Education Council (MTEC) contributing $36 million since 1999 to tertiary minerals disciplines
- applies innovations to overcome skills shortages via:
- the MTEC Associate Degree program, designed to free up the time of engineers and geologists by producing a new cadre of educated technicians, who will have pathways to full degree status;
- programs to cross-train workers in different industry disciplines such as the MCA/NFF/Commonwealth Skills MOU and the Regional Agriculture and Mining Integrated Training Initiative
- encourages under-represented groups to take part in the industry – specifically the increase in indigenous participation (at 3.1 per cent, the highest workforce participation rate of all industries) and women (an increase in the percentage of female participants in the minerals workforce from 11 per cent in 2013 to 16 per cent in August 2013).
- understands the importance of Long Distance Commuting and skilled migration to the skills needs of the industry.