Give con­trac­tors a ‘fair go’

CALLS FOR MULTI­NA­TIONAL MIN­ING GIANTS TO PAY CON­TRACTS WITHIN 30 DAYS OR LESS

Central Queensland News - - CQ | INDUSTRY -

Mr Chris­tensen said Mackay busi­nesses had been strug­gling for “far too long”.

“The big min­ing com­pa­nies (are) dic­tat­ing to lo­cal con­trac­tors how long their terms of pay­ment are go­ing to be,” he said. “What ends up hap­pen­ing is lo­cal busi­nesses then strug­gle to make their own payments.”

Mackay’s Re­source In­dus­try Net­work found that re­vert­ing to 30-day pay­ment terms would add 380 jobs, $150 mil­lion in wages and $250 mil­lion in gross re­gional prod­uct to the re­gion’s econ­omy over the next five years.

One Mackay busi­ness owner, who did not wish to be named, said it was dif­fi­cult to pay staff wages ev­ery seven days when the busi­ness was wait­ing 60-90 days to be paid for their work.

He recog­nised that not all min­ing com­pa­nies were to blame. He said Glen­core, New Hope Group and White­haven Coal were main­tain­ing payments within 30 days.

He claimed BHP and Rio Tinto were the two main cul­prits. “BHP has a big foot­print in this re­gion so many lo­cals are ad­versely af­fected,” he said.

“When there is less cash in the busi­ness it im­pacts on the busi­ness be­ing able to grow, have stock on the shelf, and in­vest in tech­nol­ogy and re­search and de­vel­op­ment.

“You need sur­plus cash to in­vest in over­head roles but when the cash is tied up some­where else you can’t do that.’’

Sign the pe­ti­tion on­line at www.makeit30­days.com.au. THE re­lease of a Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment re­port has sparked hope re­gional ar­eas will soon reap the ben­e­fits of an up­surge in the coal in­dus­try.

The re­port, re­leased ear­lier this month, showed a $250 bil­lion in­crease in the Aus­tralian econ­omy, de­liv­ered by the min­ing in­dus­try.

Jack Tre­na­man, manag­ing di­rec­tor of min­ing sup­port group SMW, said the jump in ex­ports boded well for parts of the state that re­lied on the min­ing in­dus­try.

“The Bowen Basin has pre­mium grade coal which at­tracts a pre­mium price,” Mr Tre­na­man said.

“The rest of the world wants what we’ve got here and with those ex­ports come the roy­al­ties, and with the roy­al­ties come op­por­tu­ni­ties for com­pa­nies like up us to grow, and as well to see the in­fras­truc­ture in re­gional towns like Rock­hamp­ton grow.

“Coal roy­al­ties for Queens­land, and es­pe­cially in our re­gion, is cer­tainly un­der­es­ti­mated and I think we all need to ap­pre­ci­ate the con­tri­bu­tion to coal for these ar­eas and the growth to what we have now and where it will take us in the fu­ture.”

PAY UP: Daw­son MP Ge­orge Chris­tensen has launched the Make it 30 Days cam­paign.

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