Contractors and service providers in the Pilbara are also very concerned the RSPT will have a massive impact on their businesses.
Desert Ore is a haulage and logistics contractor that serves the mining and construction industry in the Pilbara region.
The company’s general manager Peter Breese told Australian Mining the RSPT had the potential to devastate both his business and others like it in the region.
“Around 98% of our business is directly involved in mining,” he said.
“The majority of our work involves hauling of material from the pits to processing plants, but we are also heavily involved in infrastructure development.
“So if some of our clients shut down, it would probably mean around 50% of our business would be parked in the corner of the yard, getting rusty and around 25 to 30 of our employees would have to be cut.
“I fear a lot of the communities in the Pilbara will more or less turn into ghost towns.”
The National Party Member for North West in the WA Legislative Assembly, Vince Catania, echoes this view.
“Contractors and service providers make heavy investments and they are usually the first to be hit by downturns,” he told Australian Mining.
“Contracts are already on hold, so they will be carrying the burden of this tax.”
Perhaps the bluntest assessment comes from Atlas Iron’s managing director David Flanagan.
“You would not want to be working in a contractor or services company under this tax regime,” he told Australian Mining.