Queensland Liberal MP Garth Hamilton has commended Australia’s mining sector for sustaining the nation’s economic prosperity during the 90s recession, the GFC, and more recently through the pandemic.
This comes as federal Labor Treasurer Jim Chalmers said that Australia’s resources sector has been “a force for good.”
“When everything else went to custard, this is the industry that held up. It’s the industry that got us through the Great Financial Crisis (GFC), it’s the industry that got us out of the 90s recession that we had to have—it’s always been there for us,” he said.
“Australia’s got a great history of providing exactly what we need, not just to build ourselves, but across the world relies on us.”
Meanwhile, federal, state, and territory leaders have expressed support for Australia’s critical minerals sector after a roundtable meeting on the sidelines of the 26th World Mining Congress in Brisbane.
“The Australian Government is committed to working with the states and territories to boost the development of our critical minerals sector and create new jobs in processing those minerals into materials that are crucial for the clean energy future.”
Mining Industry During the 90s Recession, GFC and PandemicIn the early 1990s, Australia entered what was labelled the "recession that we had to have" by then-Labor PM Paul Keating. The economic downturn saw the Australian economy fall into a severe recession, with interest rates hiking to 17 percent, unemployment peaking at 11 percent, bankruptcies rising by 30 percent, and almost 10,000 Australians seeking unemployment benefits in just one week.
“That all changed in the second half of 2008, as the effects of the mining boom were offset by the impact of the global financial crisis,” according to the RBA.
However, the mining boom placed Australia in a strong economic and fiscal position ahead of the crisis and helped accelerate the post-crisis recovery, reported the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
Additionally, despite trade sanctions from China, mining profits reached a record $55 billion (US$36.4 billion) in the June 2021 quarter.