DESPITE commodity price volatility, the resources sector is continuing to support the state by attracting global investment and creating thousands of jobs.
According to the State Government’s Local Content Report, November 2012, 85 international companies that support resources project activity have expanded into WA in the past two years; nearly half of these operate in the oil and gas industry.
The UK and US each have 16 additional companies working on projects in WA, while Norway has 11 and China has 8. WA Commerce minister Simon O’Brien said the report highlighted that offshore companies continued to be positive about the state’s resources sector.
“The arrival of more international companies brings a number of benefits to the state – including knowledge transfer, research and development activities, and new technologies – while opening pathways for future global expansion through trade and network development,” he said.
“The State Government identified the 85 organisations and found that the most compelling reason for these companies to make such a big investment was in response to the current and predicted growth of the WA
The report also revealed that since July 2011, local businesses had claimed contracts worth $30 billion, which resulted in 75,000 jobs being created in WA.
The contracts were across a wide range of sectors in the manufacturing and service industries, including construction, project management and equipment supply.
There are currently $167 billion worth of projects under construction or in the pipeline in WA.
Mr O’Brien said that the Industry Facilitation and Support Program introduced in 2011, which provides financial assistance to WA businesses seeking to supply to the resources industry, had been a huge success.
He said 120 small and medium-sized local companies had been allocated $2.5 million to assist in areas such as capital equipment upgrade, risk management and quality assurance, training and business systems
“We already know of 30 positive outcomes from the program that have led to contracts being awarded and increased employment,” he said.
The report also outlined details of a further 10 government initiatives designed to ensure that competitive local companies had the opportunity to work with businesses responsible for the state’s resource projects.
“This will add greater impetus to the momentous we have built up since the introduction of the Local Industry Participation Framework in July 2011,” Mr O’Brien said.