East and North East

CME’s Eastern portfolio includes the resource rich Goldfields-Esperance region, covering a third of the Western Australian land mass and incorporating the nine local government jurisdictions of Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Coolgardie, Dundas, Esperance, Laverton, Leonora, Menzies, Ngaanyatjarraku, and Ravensthorpe.

Commodities produced within the region include gold, nickel, iron ore, cobalt, zinc, copper, silver, rare earths, gypsum and limesand.

In 2013, the value of the region’s commodities was estimated at $9.1B, accounting for 7 per cent of Western Australia’s $121B in sales value. During the same period, the region produced 84 per cent of the state’s nickel and 65 per cent of the state’s gold, with resources sector employment accounting for 22 per cent of the workforce population.

Projects and Issues

Within the region, CME is focussed on the following priorities:

Regional skills requirements

  • Mines rescue training
  • Community development
  • Safety legislation reform
  • Taxation and government rates
  • Environmental stewardship
  • Essential infrastructure delivery.


The CME Eastern and North Eastern Regional Councils provide a forum for mine managers to discuss regional industry matters and initiate response strategies to support growth and development of their operations in the region. The Councils also act as key informants for resources sector issues which require greater investigation and advocacy by CME.

Meetings of the CME Eastern Regional Council take place on a quarterly basis in Kalgoorlie, with meetings of the CME North Eastern Regional Council occurring on a quarterly basis in Perth.

The Eastern Regional Council is chaired by a Member of the Executive Council.

Working Groups

The CME Eastern portfolio also includes a number of working groups and forums which meet as required to review specific industry issues. These include:

  • CME Goldfields Community Relations Forum
  • CME Goldfields Human Resources Forum
  • CME Goldfields Environmental Forum
  • CME Eastern Region Occupational Safety and Health Forum.


The Kimberley region can be defined by the four local government areas; The Shires of Broome, Derby-West Kimberley, Halls Creek and Wyndham-East Kimberley.

The resources sector is the most significant contributor to the region’s economy. In 2016, there were 13,650 Kimberley residents in employment. Almost 14,600 people working in the region, indicating a number of people commute to the region for work.

In 2016-17, the resources sector in the Kimberley employed 974 people and had $356 million worth of production. This activity was dominated by diamonds, as the Kimberley region produces approximately 90% of the world’s pink diamonds, and all of the diamonds in Western Australia. Additionally, the Kimberley region has extensive offshore oil & gas and is an important hub for several significant oil & gas producers.

The Kimberley region still has vast undeveloped resources including rare earths, mineral sands, bauxite, coal, gold, iron ore, natural gas and oil.

Other industries such as tourism, agriculture and aquaculture are also other important contributors to the Gross Regional Product.

Projects and Issues

Engaging with communities and contributing towards community development is not only the right thing for resources companies to do, it also makes business sense. The resources sector across Western Australia places great emphasis on providing real benefits and outcomes for indigenous Australians. This include both direct employment of Aboriginal people as well as improving local content and engagement with Aboriginal businesses.

Improved infrastructure for the Kimberley region is also a key priority.


CME member companies participating in the Kimberley Regional Council (KRC) include:

  • Shell
  • Northern Minerals
  • Rio Tinto (Argyle Diamonds)
  • Woodside Energy
  • Mount Gibson Iron
  • Northern Star Resources
  • Buru Energy Limited
  • Theia Energy
  • Inpex
  • Sheffield Resources

Mid West

The Mid West region for CME includes the Gascoyne and covers approximately 614,000 square kilometres with 21 local government jurisdictions.

The region’s resources sector contributed $2.8 billion to the state economy in 2015. The region’s resources sector contributed $2.8bn to the state economy in 2015, which includes $111 million from the Gascoyne. The resources sector is the single biggest contributor to the Mid West’s regional product and will continue to play a major role in the future development of the region.

The Midwest’s resources sector is diverse with production of the top three commodity groups broadly equal in size. In 2015, these were valued as follows: gold ($853 million), iron ore ($824 million), and copper/lead/zinc ($785 million). (Source: Department of Mines and Petroleum). Also of significance was heavy minerals sands production valued at $123 million and salt from the Gascoyne at $105 million.

CME membership in the Midwest region includes Karara Mining Limited, Mount Gibson Iron Limited, Sinosteel Midwest Corporation Limited, Ramelius Resources Limited, Doray Minerals Limited, Minjar Gold, Minerals and Metals Group (MMG) Golden Grove, Iluka Resources Limited, Rosslyn Hill Mining and Centrex Metals.

Given the long standing history of mining in the Midwest, the region is home to a broad range of specialist ancillary companies, which service the resources sector, including mining and earthworks contractors, specialist reline companies, engineering companies, specialist training providers, as well as a small number of specialist marine companies tied to the developing oil and gas sector in the state’s north.

Geraldton is also an important regional centre for the location of a FIFO workforce for the Pilbara, given its regional airport.

Projects and Issues

Banded iron formations, developing greater Aboriginal workforce engagement, co-existence under regional radio quiet restrictions, understanding FIFO work practices, community perceptions, ongoing representation of industry on regional forums


CME’s 2016 Mid West Regional Council is currently chaired by Greg Payne of Karara Mining.

North West

The North West is Western Australia’s primary mining region, where minerals and petroleum are produced on an international scale. It is a vast region encompassing the Pilbara with a land area of over half a million square kilometres as well as extensive oil and gas fields off the coast.

The development of the resources sector in the North West has been the catalyst for the growth of the Western Australian economy in the latter half of the twentieth century. Resources companies are the primary driving force of the Pilbara economy which is often referred to as the ‘economic heart’ of Western Australia.

The value of resources production from the North West was over $100 billion in 2013, contributing to almost 80 per cent of the state’s total. Commodities produced in the region include iron ore, copper, gold and silver, manganese and salt, and a range of hydrocarbons including crude oil and condensate, liquefied natural gas, natural gas, LPG Butane and Propane.

Approximately 500 million tonnes of iron ore were exported in 2012/13. Iron ore from the Pilbara had total sales value of nearly $80 billion (2012/13) which makes it the leading commodity. Many new projects have recently been completed as well as expansions to existing projects.

Western Australia’s largest oil and gas field is the Carnarvon Basin off the north-west coast. Following the discovery in 1971/1972 of the North West Shelf gas fields the North West Shelf Venture has seen $27 billion invested in facilities that make up Australia’s largest oil and gas resource development. Australia’s biggest resource project, the Gorgon Joint Venture LNG project, is set for development at an estimated cost of $63 billion and a further $19.6 billion of offshore committed projects are to be developed. The petroleum sector accounted for $25.38 billion of production in 2013.

Mining of nickel, gold, copper and manganese also continues in the Pilbara. There are also significant uranium deposits in the Pilbara, most notably Kintyre which is the second largest known deposit in Western Australia.

Companies in the North West make substantial economic contributions, both direct and indirect which have a huge positive impact locally, regionally and nationally. They inject millions of dollars directly into the region through salaries and wages, payments of taxes and royalties to governments and through the support of local suppliers, contractors and other businesses.

Projects and Issues

Within the North West Region, CME is focused on the following issues:

  • Sustainable regional hubs and communities
  • Social infrastructure provided by government; supported by industry
  • An industry-government infrastructure plan for state and regional development
  • Coordination between the responsibilities of government, industry and community in the provision of social and physical infrastructure
  • Effective regulatory capacity frameworks
  • Access to an appropriately skilled workforce
  • Increase the size of the skilled labour pool
  • Responsible water use
  • Industry-wide technology solutions.


The North West Regional Council is chaired by Chris Cottier of BHP Billiton Iron Ore.

South West

The South West, being the state’s most populated region outside of Perth, has a diverse economy with much of the region’s prosperity being based on mining. Mineral production is valued at $15.2 billion (Department of Mines and Petroleum’s Stats Digest 2012-13).

Commodities produced in the region include alumina, coal for power generation, gold, heavy mineral sands, tin, tantalum and spodumene. The South West is also a key resource processing area.

Mining and minerals form the region’s largest industry sector. Coal, alumina and mineral sands are the largest economic contributors. Mining in the region includes the extraction of coal, mineral sands, spodumene, tantalum and tin.



BHP Billiton Worsley Alumina processes bauxite, mined in Boddington and transported by conveyor to the refinery near Collie into alumina. The refinery is the second largest in the southern hemisphere.

Alcoa’s Western Australian operations include bauxite mines at Huntly and Willowdale in the Darling Range south of Perth, supplying bauxite to the alumina refineries at Kwinana, Pinjarra and Wagerup.

Together, the refineries form one of the world’s largest alumina producing hubs.

Spodumene, tin and tantalum
A significant portion of world demand for spodumene is met from Talison Lithium Limited’s Greenbushes minesite. Spodumene is used as a feedstock for the production of lithium.


The South West produces all of Western Australia’s coal supplies. There are two coal producers mining in the Collie area, Yancoal and Griffin Coal/Lanco Resources Australia Pty Ltd. Verve Energy uses the majority of coal for electricity generation with the remainder used by industry in the production of alumina, mineral sands, cement and nickel.

Mineral Sands

Iluka Resources Limited and Doral Mineral Sands Pty Ldt mine deposits within the south west region. The mineral sands industry is an integrated mining, processing and manufacturing sector. Mining and separation of ilmenite, zircon, natural rutile and monazite, secondary processing of minerals to upgraded ilmenite, and the manufacture of titanium dioxide pigment.

Projects and Issues

Within the South West Region, CME is focused on the following priorities:

  • Infrastructure planning – road and rail infrastructure to Bunbury Port to support industry requirements
  • Industry buffer zones and transport corridors – definition, establishment and future protection of transport corridors to provide priority access to export facilities and industrial estates
  • Community engagement and education to ensure industry’s contribution is understood by regional communities
  • South West issues relating to the Department of Environmental Regulation’s Re-Engineering for Industry Regulation and Environment Program (REFIRE).


CME in the South West hosts the following member forums:

  • South West Regional Council
  • South West Environment Forum
  • South West Occupational Health and Safety Forum
  • Bunbury Port Users Group.