Australia's mining industry, once the country’s second-largest jobs generator, has become just one of many employers in the nation, data released Thursday shows.
According to the Bureau of Statistics, the sector added 4,200 jobs in the year to May, dramatically less than the 61,000 workers it hired in the same period ending in May 2012.
Having done their best to ride out a two-year slump in global coal prices, Aussies are shedding thousands of jobs as they shelve high-cost mines, sell non-core assets and drive efficiencies across their operations.
Only last week BHP Billiton (ASX:BHP) terminated a $338 million (A$360m) contract with contractor Downer EDI at its Goonyella Riverside mine one of Australia’s biggest coal mines. The decision will leave 427 workers out of jobs.