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More foreign workers are heading to the Northern Territory to fill mining jobs after the Government signed a special Regional Migration Agreement to help desperate businesses.
NT Minister for business and employment Delia Lawrie said in a statement the NT was set to experience huge growth and demand for workers was outstripping local supply.
"While we are investing heavily in local training, it is still not enough to meet demand in a competitive Australian labour market," she said.
“This RMA will act as a pressure valve for the local economy, helping businesses experiencing a shortage of staff to find workers when none can be sourced locally.”
Lawrie said the current labour shortages in the NT were expected to be worsened by several major resources projects planned for the region.
The news comes a week after Minerals Council NT spokesperson Peter Stewart said workers were unwilling to move to the NT for mining jobs.
Stewart said companies had to rely on fly-in fly-out workers and relocating people was "part of the puzzle" for filling mining jobs.
Yesterday the NT Chamber of Commerce said one thousand full-time jobs had been added to the region in the last three to four months.
The RMA program was announced in the 2011-12 budget and is expected to be in place in the first half of this year.