08 October 2019

Some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them. These are the words of William Shakespeare, which may very well apply to one of Australia's leading mining states. 

Western Australia is endowed with resources, skills and an operating environment that are unparalleled globally. The state holds major positions in a wide range of commodities and energy sources, which are supported by a well-skilled and flexible workfroce in their devlopment. 

Western Australia's prominence in the mining sector doesn't stop there. The founding partner of management consulting firm VCI, Graeme Stanway, predicts that the next 10 years will see the state grow even further from greater integration with Asia. 

Mining companies that have developed a presence in the region, and  those that are ready to catch a break can also snatch up abundant growth prospects from a new commodity base in copper, and further opportunities in the battery industry in both commodity supply and processing. 

It is apparent that Western Australia could very well belong to Shakespeare's first category of bestowed greatness. Can this possibly drive the state into complacency in other areas? Stanway, who will speak at the Western Australian Mining Conference next week, thinks so. 

"Why is it with all the advantages Western Australia has, it is led by Queensland in the mining equipment and technology (METS) sector?" he asks. 

"The technology and associated services industries in Western Australia could be a global leader and be much bigger, insulating the economy against the worst impacts of cyclicality."

"Because we are so blessed with commodities, we tend to face less pressure to develop our associated industries, which is not the case in states such as Queensland and South Australia. Government and industry need to come together here."

Stanwell perceives that this complacecny, and the state's version of the Dutch Disease, as one of the biggest threats to the Western Australian Mining industry. 

He also urges the state to reimagine its strategy of attracting the best young people into the industry, including its education system, to resolve the skills shortage currently plaguing the sector.

Graeme Stanway will be a keynote speaker at the Western Australian Mining Conference held in the Perth Covention and Exhibition Centre on October 15-16, with a presentation titled, "Where are we going by 2030?"