The CEO of WA’s Chamber of Minerals and Energy, Mr Everingham has shown support for a Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA) to address shortages in WA’s Goldfields mining region. The Shires of Coolgardie and Kalgoorlie-Boulder and the Citizenship and Multicultural Minister, Mr Alan Tudge met last month to discuss the DAMA and if approved, the agreement would allow businesses in the Goldfields region to more easily engage overseas workers with exemptions from the existing migration requirements.
WA’s mining shortage of FIFO workers
The WA mining industry has shown significant signs of recovery with new mines being built this year by some of the world’s biggest mining companies. This activity is expected to create more than 5,000 mining jobs in WA. The latest statistics from SEEK also reflect a general growth in the mining, resource and energy sector with the industry posting 32 per cent more job advertisements this year than the same time last year, which is almost four times more job advertisements than Australia’s average. However, despite advertising salaries over $150,000 in many cases, companies have reported they are still finding it difficult to recruit locally for FIFO positions.
Mr Everingham has told the ABC more than 1000 vacancies existed in the Kalgoorlie-Boulder mining sector alone. He said while the intention is to employ locally, he claims the region is at crisis point. Mr Everingham says, “If we have to set up special immigration or work zones, our members would definitely welcome the ability to get access to skilled workers immediately.”
The recovering resources industry is set to have a significant impact on the WA economy and the Government is being urged to support its sustainability. While the CEO of WA’s Chamber of Minerals and Energy has shown support for the agreement, the Government is also being urged by FIFO community groups to introduce support services to make FIFO work more attractive to Australian workers. It will be interesting to see whether the DAMA is approved, as it will signal opportunities for businesses in the region to more easily engage overseas workers where there is a genuine need.
Interstaff will keep you updated on further news and developments on engaging skilled overseas workers. If you have any questions, please contact our migration agents on +61 8 9221 3388 (or National Free Call 1800 449 858) or [email protected]