News

Extreme FIFO plan strikes fears

Adani Mining says it will exhaust all skilled worker options in Australia before seeking off-shore employees for its Galilee Basin coal mine.
Adani Mining says it will exhaust all skilled worker options in Australia before seeking off-shore employees for its Galilee Basin coal mine. Simon Green

THE prospect of an Indian coal miner flying jumbo jets full of overseas workers directly into a proposed Galilee Basin mine site has sent shockwaves through the region.

Yesterday it emerged Indian-owned Adani Mining Pty Ltd would consider flying off-shore workers directly to its 2011 acquired Moray Downs property in the Galilee Basin, west of Clermont, where it also proposed to build a new 2500-person mining town.

Several large-scale miners were in confidential talks with the Federal Government about replacing 457 visas with Enterprise Migration Agreements, which would allow the fly in, fly out transportation of overseas labour to tackle massive job shortages in the resources sector.

The move attracted a stern warning from Mines Minister Stirling Hinchliffe about Adani's responsibility to Queenslanders.

"I've given a very clear message to the companies involved, including Mr Adani directly, that we have a very high expectation about the role Queensland workers will play in these projects," Mr Hinchliffe said.

Yesterday Adani maintained it always aimed to exhaust all available work sources in Australia before turning overseas.

"Our commitment is to train Australian workers if they are not skilled to work on our projects, before looking at any options from overseas," a company spokeswoman said.

Adani's $10.1 billion proposed Carmichael Coal Mine falls within the Isaac Regional Council. The three mayoral candidates for the region have weighed in on the debate.

"We spoke to Adani in January and they indicated they were looking at village-style accommodation," Mayor Cedric Marshall said.

"We want to see the mining companies invest back into our communities.

"But we won't have the space or the numbers to provide or house the workforces they need."

Isaac mayoral candidates Ann Crawford and Anne Baker both condemned the idea, describing it as a dangerous step towards 100% FIFO communities.

"It's as though they want to rip the riches out of the middle of the country and put absolutely nothing back," Cr Crawford said.

"We are happy to welcome workers from anywhere into our communities, but as world's best advice has clearly stated and experience has now shown, we want them based here, living here, contributing to our communities and nation building."

Cr Baker acknowledged the skills shortage, but said the key was to ensure companies invested in training workers before jumping on the foreign FIFO bandwagon.

"Companies must be pressured to do the hard yards on training and investment in Queensland workforces and regional economies before being allowed quick fix, fly in, fly out foreign labour," Cr Baker said.

Likewise, neighbouring Barcaldine Regional Council Mayor Rob Chandler feared the move could be a stepping stone to 100% FIFO.

"I tell you what, if this sets precedent for our area we will be dragged kicking and screaming off the tarmac," Cr Chandler said.

He said companies operating in the Galilee Basin had a social responsibility to help towns grow sensibly and sustainably.

"We believe 30% of the workforce should be housed locally," Cr Chandler said.

The Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union rejected the jumbo jet solution, dubbing it "FIFO on steroids".

AMWU state secretary Andrew Dettmer said the mining industry had failed to implement skills training programs of its own over the past few years and now looked to import foreign workers on reduced pay and conditions.

"It doesn't plan and it doesn't develop - it just wants to import workers into jobs that should go to Queenslanders," Mr Dettmer said.

CQUniversity mining communities expert Professor John Rolfe said he had no doubt it was possible to fly overseas workers directly into the outback.

"It's a little bit ironic that many companies are taking money out of the region already, but as soon as it happens on an international level, it becomes a big issue," Prof Rolfe said.

"This is an outcome of rapid growth.

"A fair bit is done on training in Australia but essentially we've missed the boat. There isn't the skilled base here for all the approvals."


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Space event rocks Comet

News

SPACE event sparked concerns of a plane crash.

Meet Central Queensland's pet of the week

Central Queensland Pet Rescue's pet of the week, Pablo. On September 29

Meet the newest member of the Central Queensland Pet Rescue family

Tee up for a good cause

FUNDS TARGET: Last year, Enwise Electrical raised more than $5000 for Bushkids with their golf day and the local electrical  company is hoping to do the same this year.

Show your support for Bushkids by signing up to it charity golf day.

Local Partners

Oh, the artworks you'll see at Moranbah kids' exhibition

YOUNG artists from Moranbah State School are looking forward to showing off their creative sides as part of a special art exhibition in Moranbah.

Marist students to share musical talents at SHEP

MUSICAL TALENTS: Adam Phillips, Reef Johnson and Elijah Horsfall from Marist College Emerald.

Marist students represent school at State Honours Ensemble Program.

Space event rocks Comet

News

SPACE event sparked concerns of a plane crash.

Meet Central Queensland's pet of the week

Central Queensland Pet Rescue's pet of the week, Pablo. On September 29

Meet the newest member of the Central Queensland Pet Rescue family

Tee up for a good cause

FUNDS TARGET: Last year, Enwise Electrical raised more than $5000 for Bushkids with their golf day and the local electrical  company is hoping to do the same this year.

Show your support for Bushkids by signing up to it charity golf day.

Top five pie locations in Central Queensland

Meat pies at Pie Face.   Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin

Central Queensland's best pie locations.

CH Regional Council heads to Blackwater

Mayor Kerry Hayes presented a cheque for $500 to the Blackwater Army Cadets.

Council heads to Blacktown.

Unveiling ceremony to honour victims of flood

AFLOAT: Floating Lantern Ceremony at the Clermont Gold and Coal Festival paid tribute to the great flood in Clermont in 1916.

VICTIMS of Clermont's 1916 flood will be honoured in ceremony.

Classic car auction draws buyers from US, Dubai

"He wants everyone to enjoy the cars, the collection got too big'

Channel 9 orders second season of Doctor Doctor

Rodger Corser stars in the TV series Doctor Doctor.

RURAL medical drama finds a loyal following.

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

Testament's new album is a concept album

ROME, ITALY- JULY 27, 2016: Testament photographed at The Roman Collisseium in Rome, Italy on July 27,2016. Gene Ambo

Testament to release new album

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Rocky proves prime real estate in latest REIQ report

Kas Woch sold this Wood St home in Depot Hill for $107,000 in August.

A new investor's market as Rocky house prices hit lowest in state