John Bowler

John Bowler

Former Minister for Local Government; Employment Protection; Racing and Gaming; Goldfields-Esperance and Great Southern

    Western Australian resources continue to grow

    15/09/2006 11:00 AM

    The value of Western Australia’s mineral and petroleum sales soared to a remarkable $43.2billion in 2005-06 - a 29 per cent increase on the previous year.

    Resources Minister John Bowler said the latest statistics from the Department of Industry and Resources showed petroleum as the largest resource sector in WA, followed by iron ore and alumina.

    Mr Bowler said the remarkable result could be attributed to high overseas demand for resources that had underpinned solid commodity prices.

    “This strong result was achieved against a background of adverse weather conditions in the first quarter of 2006, mining equipment supply constraints and some shipping bottlenecks,” he said.

    “The demand for the State’s resources by our trading partners is showing no signs of slowing down.”

    The Minister said the big rise in the value of sales was mainly due to the significant increases in the petroleum and iron ore sectors - up 23 and 56 per cent respectively.

    “Petroleum was the biggest resource sector by value,” he said.

    “A $2.8billion increase in sales saw it reach a record $15.2billion, thanks largely to high world oil prices and increased LNG shipments.

    “Iron ore was the next biggest resource, with a record 244 million tonnes valued at $13billion (up 56 per cent ).

    “And with mine and port expansions and an anticipated continued strong demand, it is expected that this sector will continue its record-breaking run through this year and beyond.”

    Mr Bowler said the next in order of value was alumina, with a sales value of $4.1billion (up 19 per cent ), followed closely by nickel at $3.8billion (up eight per cent ) and gold at $3.6billion (up 18 per cent ).

    The Minister said the base metals sector had also performed strongly, with new projects coming on-stream, to record a 187 per cent increase and reach $821million worth of sales.

    “Diamonds recorded a 28 per cent increase in sales, reaching a little over 29 million carats, and salt sales increased almost 13 per cent to $230 million,” he said.

    Minister's office - 9222 8950