Mining titan Rio Tinto Group’s emphasis on regional economic development will be worth at least $900 million to the Queensland economy, as over two-thirds of the $1.38 billion in contracts for the development of the Amrun bauxite project have been awarded to local suppliers.
Over five hundred Queensland businesses have been engaged in either directly or indirectly supplying goods and services for the project, which will eventually yield a mine and processing facilities for extracting and shipping up to ten million metric tons per year.
In order to bid for a contract in excess of $1 million with Rio Tinto, the bidding firm is required to complete a Local and Indigenous Participation Plan and submit it in the course of the bidding process. Once awarded, the contracting firm are required to report compliance with the Plan to Rio Tinto at regular intervals.
“Rio Tinto’s significant investment in local and regional suppliers will provide a tremendous boost to the economy of Queensland,” said Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
“The Amrun project will ensure Queensland businesses and their employees will continue to reap the benefits of many development opportunities for years to come. It is a best practice example of encouraging local and Indigenous participation with substantial employment targets already agreed with many key suppliers,” she continued.
Of the 1,600 workers employed at the site to date, fully 77% are Queensland natives, and seven of every ten are new to Rio Tinto.
“Sustainability is crucial to this project and strict guidelines are in place for all suppliers,” remarked Rio Tinto chief executive Jean-Sébastien Jacques. “They must demonstrate they are commercially competitive, technically competent and most importantly, align with the safety standards of our group.”
“Rio Tinto is a substantial contributor to the Queensland economy paying $1.3 billion in state taxes and royalties over the past 5 years,” he concluded.