Discovery – CEO News
As a year unlike any other draws to a close, I’d thank to thank our member companies and their workforces for all the hard work that has gone into keeping our sector operating in a safe and effective manner.
This time last year, nobody could have foreseen the COVID-19 pandemic and the devastating consequences it would have around the world from both a health and economic perspective.
It’s testament to the resilience, innovation and commitment to excellence of CME members and their employees that our sector has been able to perform as strongly as it has in 2020, making invaluable contributions to the WA and Federal economies.
I’d also like to acknowledge the efforts of the CME team, who have been tireless this year in their efforts to advocate for key outcomes for our members, to keep the membership informed of the latest developments in a continually evolving environment and to communicate to the wider public the important work our sector has been doing. Against the backdrop of COVID-19, there have been several major pieces of legislation progressing at both State and Federal levels and the CME team’s work in relation to these has been exemplary.
The evolving situation around the current NSW outbreak shows that COVID-19 continues to be a key concern for our sector. The latest advice about NSW is available here.
The festive period will hopefully give many of us a chance to recharge our batteries but the conclusion to 2020 has been extremely busy.
The Joint Standing Committee on Northern Australia released an interim report last week following the events at Juukan Gorge in May. While we acknowledge the committee’s work and the opportunity provided for CME and member companies to provide submissions, we remain steadfast in our view that the WA Government should be the primary regulator for matters of Aboriginal cultural heritage through the modernisation of WA’s Aboriginal Heritage Act. We have also made it clear that any proposed moratorium on Section 18 notices under the existing Act would have major adverse impacts on major projects around the State – many of which are unrelated to mining.
On another matter, I’m delighted that the finalists for our Women In Resources Awards (WIRA) have now been announced – you can read more on that in the Featured section of this newsletter. WIRA is always a highlight of the mining and resources sector’s social calendar and next year’s event promises to be the best yet.
Finally, it was extremely heartening to learn this week of a revised WA Government forecast operating surplus of more than $2 billion and also national data which suggests employment in the State now exceeds pre-COVID levels. When you consider the conditions in other parts of the world, that’s an extremely fortunate position for WA to be in and I’m extremely proud of our sector’s contribution to that.
I’d like to take this opportunity to wish the entire mining and resources sector a safe and happy Christmas and New Year. I look forward to working with you all again in 2021.