WA’s resources industry is set to get a boost, with Rio Tinto injecting funds into the Pilbara region’s Koodaideri mine and rail project.
Rio Tinto has approved a $3.5 billion investment for the project which is set to begin in 2019, subject to government and environmental approvals.
The project is expected to create more than 2,000 jobs during the construction phase and an additional 600 jobs once the mine is operational.
It is also expected to provide opportunities for local WA companies supplying goods and services in the Pilbara and across the State.
Premier Mark McGowan said he welcomed Rio Tinto’s investment into Koodaideri mine to increase employment for WA workers and opportunities for businesses.
“This is a big boost for the WA economy and welcome news for WA workers,” Mr McGowan said.
“This new investment demonstrates confidence is returning to the Western Australian economy, and new jobs are being created.”
He said the project was another successful attempt to get Western Australians back into work, particularly in the resources sector.
“My government is committed to implementing our Plan for Jobs and diversifying the economy,” he said.
“My government will continue to work with the State’s resources industry to ensure local jobs are maximised on new projects.”
Mr McGowan claimed it was a step towards improving the State’s economy and unemployment, but more work was needed.
“Confidence is returning to the Western Australian economy, and new jobs are being created,” he said.
“There are very positive signs but we will continue to work hard to get our State back on track.”