The proposed Woodside FIFO camp is detrimental to the local economy and jobs

The Karratha & Districts Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KDCCI) sought to undertake this study following suggestion in the media that the proposed FIFO camp would be a ”boom” for local jobs.

The KDCCI wanted to analyse the validity of that assumption. Secondly, it wanted a critical analysis of temporary worker accommodation (TWA) available in Karratha.

The report has concluded there is surplus TWA accommodation. It has also realized that, the proposed 700-bed FIFO camp in Karratha, will have significant negative impacts to the local economy and jobs.

Given the significance of Woodside’s market share and its demand profile, if the Bay Village proposal were to proceed it would essentially replace the current economic benefits the existing accommodation providers supply. The study shows there would be a net loss of 69 local jobs, $4.8 million in local incomes and take $6.6 million per year from the local economy. (in value added terms ) . Over a 30 year time frame it predicts a $197 million loss to the local economy.

The analysis highlights that Woodside’s baseload and peak shutdown workforce accommodation needs could be met through existing accommodation suppliers and that removing demand from the current market would likely put at risk the commercial viability of many independent camp operations.

If the Bay Village proposal were to proceed there would be an investment of $80 million which would create 77 jobs for the 12 month construction period. However, if construction was modular it would greatly diminish the economic impact on the local economy as the majority of the economic activity would be outside Karratha.

The KDCCI also wanted to understand the impact of Woodside employing FIFO as opposed to Residential staff. Woodside indicated they have 126 houses vacant and until recently the KDCCI understood that the majority of Pluto’s workforce would be residential. Currently this is not the case.. The report found if , for example, 150 FIFO jobs were residential the impact on the community would be significant. It would create a further 33 jobs (Total of 183) and over 30 years would create a positive impact worth close to $830 million on the future Karratha economy.

The study was completed by a respected local consultancy who has undertaken work for the Mining Industry, State and Local Government.

The Karratha & Districts Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO John Lally said; “The KDCCI acknowledges the significant role Woodside plays in the local , state economy and within community but it strongly supports the City of Karratha’s council position that there is no need to build this FIFO camp as existing providers can accommodate demand. The Chamber encourages Woodside to support long term the local accommodation providers and the local economy.

For the full details of the report, click here.