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NSW coal jobs hit new high

March was a big month for New South Wales’ coal industry, as the sector reached record numbers in coal mining jobs.

The new record number jumped to 25,505, the highest number of jobs ever recorded by Coal Services since it began tracking the numbers in 1998.

This number is more than double that first recorded in the last quarter of 1998, which saw a workforce of 10,898 coal miners across NSW.

The Hunter and Gunnedah regions of NSW had the highest jump job numbers, reaching 14,750 and 3116 respectively.

“The record number of people working in the NSW coal mining sector shows that over the last 25 years, coal mining has become increasingly critical to regional communities and the state economy,” NSW Minerals Council chief executive officer Stephen Galilee said. “These job numbers also highlight the need to support mining communities.

“A mark of the importance of the coal mining sector to NSW is the strong ongoing demand for our high quality coal. Coal Services figures show that coal exports to our major trade partners are up almost 16 percent with thermal coal exports used in energy production up over 19 percent.”

The Western region of NSW reached an all-time high in coal mining jobs in March, with 3,585 workers compared to just over 1400 in 1998. The Southern region saw an improvement in numbers from 2023, reaching 3344.

“NSW coal mining is playing a critical role in the budget repair task being undertaken by the NSW Government,” Galilee said.

“In particular, the decision to increase coal mining royalty rates from 1 July 2024 was the single biggest revenue decision taken by the NSW Government.

“Metals mining jobs are also at near record levels with nearly 8000 people working in the NSW metals mining sector based on the latest annual NSW Mining Industry Expenditure Survey,”

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