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Construction (L-R) Fern, Simon, Phoenix Morgan and River Levi The Smythe boys Bhabie and Paul Dickens fifo Sgt Rob Smith and Constable Paul Muller (L-R) Charlie Swaffield and Friend, Jayden and Eathan Little and Rylee Flint (L-R) Kaitlin Hodby, Leah Thorpe, Layne O'Brien, Brooke Hodby and Maddison Thorpe mining (L-R) Sharlani, Rhythm-Rayne, Eesiar and Khvalee'a. Aboutusgeneric_2 csg Melanie and Chevy Ohl csg Sgt Rob Smith and Constable Paul Muller
Construction (L-R) Fern, Simon, Phoenix Morgan and River Levi The Smythe boys Bhabie and Paul Dickens fifo Sgt Rob Smith and Constable Paul Muller (L-R) Charlie Swaffield and Friend, Jayden and Eathan Little and Rylee Flint (L-R) Kaitlin Hodby, Leah Thorpe, Layne O'Brien, Brooke Hodby and Maddison Thorpe mining (L-R) Sharlani, Rhythm-Rayne, Eesiar and Khvalee'a. Aboutusgeneric_2 csg Melanie and Chevy Ohl

FIFO inquiry reopens
QRC challenges widely held assumptions about FIFO in CQ
Wednesday 15 July 2015  

The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) has called on the parliamentary committee presiding over the FIFO enquiry, to keep a broad perspective when assessing work practices in Queensland mining.

Chief Executive of the QRC, Michael Roche told the the enquiry this morning at its final round of hearings in Brisbane, that the growth in FIFO was a symptom of a massive construction boom.

“During this period of unprecedented expansion, skilled workers were in massive under-supply, with competition between industries and from other resource states like Western Australia,” he said.

“The training system could not respond to commercial realities, and small regional communities could not deliver the entire workforce needs of major resources projects.

However, with that construction phase now over, Mr Roche says FIFO numbers have fallen by 35 per cent. He also challenged the theory that the BMA growth projects most often criticised in the FIFO debate, precluded locals from working on them.

“Central to this committee’s inquiry would appear to be the approvals granted in 2011 for FIFO operational workforces at two BMA coal mines in the Bowen Basin – Daunia and Caval Ridge,” he said.

“At the time of those approvals in 2011, BMA had around 750 vacancies at their other Bowen Basin coal mines and the peak in the superheated housing market in towns like Moranbah was still some 12 months away.

“I’d be the first to acknowledge that many central Queensland communities are hurting right now, but not because of 950 FIFO workers at two of the state’s 56 operating coal mines; but because of the loss of over 9,000 coal industry jobs over the past three years in the face of some of the toughest market conditions in 20 years.”

“The committee needs to understand that there is no such thing as a 100 percent FIFO mine in the Bowen Basin, as records confirm there are around 1,000 local worker and contractor visits per month to these two mines to support operations.”


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