Christmas is ruined for more than 400 Western Australians and their families after the McGowan Government slammed the door on two new iron ore mines in the Yilgarn.
In a direct contradiction to the Premier’s election promise to create employment, Mark McGowan today slashed 420 jobs by rejecting Mineral Resources’ proposal to develop the Jackson 5 and Bungalbin East iron ore deposits in the Helena-Aurora Range.
The Nationals Leader Mia Davies, whose Central Wheatbelt electorate takes in the two projects, said a further 1000 indirect jobs would also be lost.
“Labor’s attack on regional employment in Western Australia knows no bounds,” Ms Davies said. “I hope the Premier and Minister for Environment enjoy their Christmas Day because they have condemned 400-plus families to a festive season of misery.
“This project represented a considerable economic opportunity for our region with Minerals Resources committing to maximise local content and employment.
“Min Res had also committed to examine exporting iron ore through the port of Esperance, providing a crucial boost for the local economy.
“All of which is now dead in the water.”
Ms Davies said it was disappointing that Labor’s “green caucus” had won the day.
“MPs such as Chris Tallentire, a former director of the Conservation Council of WA, will be popping champagne corks today,” Ms Davies said.
“The Premier and Environment Minister have failed to overcome their party’s internal divisions and green-leanings to ensure a good outcome for jobs, which was supposedly the number one priority of this Labor Government.”
Ms Davies said the McGowan Government had missed a chance to help Western Australia’s wounded finances by rejecting the two new mines.
“At a time when the Labor Government is causing chaos and heartache in regional Western Australia by closing vital regional institutions such as School of the Air all in the name of saving cash, it has forgone $65 million a year and $10 billion in economic activity with one stroke of a pen,” Ms Davies said.
“Sadly, to make up for the shortfall, we can expect more cuts to key regional services in Western Australia as the McGowan Government looks to prop up Metronet and other Perth projects.”