25 Amrun jobs created by local Aboriginal business

14 November 2017

A 100 per cent Indigenous-owned business has created 25 jobs for local Aboriginal people through a contract awarded at Rio Tinto’s Amrun bauxite project on Cape York Peninsula in Far North Queensland.

Northern Haulage and Diesel Services (NHDS) from Weipa was awarded the contract to perform general services including administrative, labour and construction support at the site.

Fifteen local Aboriginal people have commenced work on-site with another 10 expected to mobilise this month.

The contract is expected to run until construction is completed at the end of 2018.

Rio Tinto Amrun Project director Marcia Hanrahan said "A real driver in delivering general services for the project is to maximise employment opportunities for local Aboriginal people.

"At present almost 80 per cent of the Amrun workforce are Queenslanders including 176 Indigenous employees of which 43 are local Aboriginal people.

"We are delighted NHDS has been awarded a contract under our general services scope. We were impressed with NHDS’ expertise and commitment to supporting the local community with jobs."

With the new mine starting commissioning and other operational activities next year, the business is working to find pathways to ensure longer-term employment opportunities for the project’s Indigenous employees.

NHDS co-owner Darrin Savo said "While completing work for the existing Rio Tinto mines on Western Cape York we were approached to extend our services to Amrun.

"This is an exciting opportunity not only because it is a chance to grow our business but also given the strong focus on employment opportunities for local Aboriginal people.

"It would have been easy for Rio Tinto to wrap up the work we are doing on to the project into the scope of a bigger contractor.

"By working as a partnership we’ve been able to develop a scope that works for us, the project and the local community. This really demonstrates Rio Tinto’s support of local Aboriginal business and employment."

About the Amrun Project

Rio Tinto announced its A$2.6 billion investment in the Amrun Project in late 2015. The project is about 40 kilometres south of Rio Tinto’s existing East Weipa and Andoom mines on the Cape York Peninsula in far north Queensland and involves the construction of a bauxite mine, processing and port facilities.

Production and shipping are expected to commence in the first half of 2019, ramping up to full production by the end of the year.

At its peak, construction of the project is expected to provide work for around 1100 people. Once operational, Amrun will help to support ongoing employment for the existing workforce of around 1400 employees and contractors at Rio Tinto’s Cape York bauxite operations.

Rio Tinto has a long history of partnering with Traditional Owners on Cape York. Amrun Project will continue creating opportunities for Indigenous people from Cape York and the surrounding region.