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"Foreign investment reductions would cost jobs": Parer.



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Media Release

 

SENATOR WARWICK PARER

MINISTER FOR RESOURCES AND ENERGY

 

 

DPIE98/345P

30 June 1998

 

NOTE; EMBARGOED FOR AUTOMATIC RELEASE 7 PM, TUESDAY, 30 JUNE .

 

“FOREIGN INVESTMENT REDUCTIONS WOULD

COST JOBS”... PARER

 

The cost of cutting foreign investment in Australia’s minerals industry would be counted in jobs, particularly in regional and rural Australia, Federal Minister for Resources and Energy, Senator Warwick Parer said today.

 

Also lost would be access to new technology and management skills, he said.

 

Senator Parer’s warning was given in an opening address delivered on his behalf by the Member for Herbert, Peter Lindsay, to the “Making Minerals Move ‘98” conference in Townsville today.

 

Mr. Lindsay said Senator Parer emphasised the importance of the minerals industry to Queensland and Australia.

 

Mining and related industries sustained Queensland’s economy, with a total production value of around $6 billion a year. The mining and minerals processing industries were the single largest source of State revenue at some $1.5 billion each year.

 

“The industry brings substantial benefits to Queensland in terms of employment, with some 20,000 direct jobs and another 60,000 indirect but real jobs in regional cities and towns throughout the State,” Mr . Lindsay said.

 

“The world class mineral regions of the Mount Isa/Carpentaria area, the coalfields of the Bowen Basin and the bauxite reserves at Cape York are all major sources of employment.”

 

Mr Lindsay said the recent State election had demonstrated that the benefits of job creation through any reduction in foreign investment was not, as thought, readily known and accepted.

 

Senator Parer said that industries, like mining, which depended on international markets had a responsibility to spread the message about the benefits of foreign investment to local communities.

 

Mr. Lindsay said Senator Parer had developed the Regional Minerals Program, a partnership between the Commonwealth, State governments and industry, to encourage a co-ordinated regional approach to developing new mines, mineral processing and related infrastructure.

 

The program was based on consultation and co-operation between industry and all levels of government, helping to identify and more closely define industry needs and priorities for infrastructure.

 

It had proved to be a resounding success in the Mt. Isa/Carpentaria region with enormous benefits for Townsville.

 

Senator Parer, in the speech, also noted that the blame for a projected 14 per cent fall in gold exploration expenditure in Australia this year lied squarely with the unworkable Native Title Act inherited from the Labor Party.

 

“This downturn is the result of the failure to pass the government’s Native Title Bill and the Ten Point Plan,” Senator Parer said in his speech.

 

 

Further Information:

 

Office, Peter Lindsay, (07) 4725 2066.

 

INTERNET : http://www.dpie.gov.auIdpie/pr/medja_releases/parer/index.html

 

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