NSW mining spending down $2.3 billion

Spending by the mining industry in NSW has taken a considerable blow, down almost 17 per cent, or $2.3 billion year on year.

The 2014/15 NSW Minerals Council survey showed that 23 different mining companies spent $11.3 billion in NSW in the last financial year, down from $13.6 billion in 2013/14.

Minerals Council CEO Stephen Galilee said there were significant economic benefits brought to the Sydney metropolitan area by the nearby mining areas.

“Most people don’t realise that Sydney is a significant mining region, but the reality is that there are many suburbs of Sydney, particularly in Western Sydney, that benefit from mining industry spending,” he said.

“For example, the Local Government Area (LGA) of Parramatta received $392 million in direct mining spending on purchases from 154 local supplier businesses, with $65 million spent in the Fairfield LGA on 112 local businesses.”

Total direct mining spending in the broader Sydney region came to $2.8 billion in 2014/15,   accounting for 25 per cent of the state’s total mining spend, compared with $3.3 billion in the previous year.

However the Hunter was still the largest beneficiary of mining spending with $4.8 billion, or 42 per cent of the industry’s direct spending, which was $1.1 billion less than the previous year’s spending of $5.9 billion.

“Lower mining spending across fewer mining supplier businesses demonstrates that when mining is hurting, the pain is felt across the rest of the economy too,” Galilee said.

“Yet despite the tough times, our sector continues to be an essential pillar of regional economies across NSW, contributing 23 per cent of Gross Regional Product (GRP) in the Hunter, 8.3 per cent of GRP in the Illawarra, and 10.6 per cent of GRP in the Central West of NSW.”

The survey also found that around 1 in every 20 jobs in the Sydney local area was at least in some way supported by the mining industry.

Direct employment in the industry remained steady, only 251 jobs down to 21,265 mining roles.

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