Has the mining downturn finished?

WA premier Colin Barnett has stated that mining has reached the bottom of the trough, but that the future remains difficult.

Speaking at the Africa Downunder Conference, Barnett declared the worst of the slump over despite ongoing volatility in commodity prices, SBS reports.

"I'm either brave enough or silly enough to suggest that we've hit the bottom," Barnett  said.

"Global markets are fragile but the fact that we're seeing some greater stability in commodities, oil prices, gas prices, iron ore prices – I think we have probably hit the bottom."

He went on to slam mining's detractors, who have called it a sunset industry.

"That is naive and wrong. It is a dominant industry,” he said.

“If China has slowed from 12 per cent growth to 7 per cent growth, that will do me.”

Resolute Mining head John Welborn saw Barnett’s comments as positive omen for the industry, and one that can be used to bolster it as financial institutions turn to the divestment of operators in the resources sector.

"We heard from the premier that apparently commodity markets have bottomed so take that to the bank and move forward," Welborn said.

This positive position is supported by rising levels of exploration quarter on quarter, up 42 per cent.

Price wise, iron ore and coal have slowly seen upward movement over the last few months, after recording new lows in July.


Has mining reached its nadir, or does it have further to fall?
What are your thoughts?


To keep up to date with Australian Mining, subscribe to our free email newsletters delivered straight to your inbox. Click here.