Mining jobs in Australia to more than double in next 20 years

Job growth in mining and mining-related work in Australia is expected to increase by over 100% by 2031,  outpacing other sectors of the economy, The Courier-Mail is reporting.

The website says the total mining workforce is tipped to more than double in the next 20 years, from an estimated 693,000 who are now directly and indirectly employed to 1.45 million staff Australia-wide:

In the next five years alone, the Department for Education, Employment and Workplace Relations reveals 69,200 new jobs will be created directly in mining, at a growth rate of 34.5 per cent compared to 25 per cent for health and 21 per cent for electricity, gas, water and waste services.

Perhaps more striking, the Minerals Council of Australia estimates that for every worker employed directly by mining, a further three workers are employed in mining-related roles, The Courier-Mail reports, such as mechanics and janitorial staff.

While mining is estimated to account for 7% of annual job creation in Australia, most Australians estimate the industry to be bigger than it actually is, according to a study by the Australian Institute reported by earlier this month:

Australians were asked to estimate what percentage of the nations workers are employed by the mining industry. The average response was around 16 per cent, when according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) the actual figure is 1.9 per cent.

“The survey also found Australians believe that mining accounts for more than one third (35%) of economic activity. However, ABS figures show that the mining industry accounts for around 9.2 per cent of GDP – about the same contribution as manufacturing and slightly smaller than the finance industry,” writes the study authors.