While excitement around Western Australia’s burgeoning battery minerals sector continues to gain momentum, analysts have warned local industry against a gung-ho approach to downstream processing.

The announcement of major iron ore projects by the big three miners has been heralded by many as a clear indication the mining industry is back in gear.

Having ridden out one of the resources sector’s most notable downturns, growth is back on the agenda as miners enjoy rising cash flows and higher commodity prices, but companies have so far taken a cautious approach.

Australia is endowed with a rich geological bounty and leads the world in mineral exploration.

Australia’s mining industry is one of the nation’s great success stories and the Australian Government is doing all it can to ensure it remains so.

While mining giants like BHP and Rio Tinto dominate much of the public spotlight in Australia, junior and mid-tier players are the often-silent operators working to sure up the industry’s future success.

First there was the gold rush, then the iron ore boom and now, the battery metals revolution.

As a potential skills shortage in Western Australia threatens to delay the progress of the recovering mining sector, employers are having to find new ways to make working in the industry an attractive prospect.

‘Exploring the unexplored’ may sound like the tagline from an award-winning sci-fi epic, but there is nothing fictional about it in the realm of mining.

The skills shortage in the drilling industry has been caused by a rise in drill rig utilisation levels of about 45 per cent over the last two years.

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