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The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimated that there were 2,075 people employed in the mining industry at May 2005, a decrease of 1.2% on the 2001 figure. Wages and salaries totalled $92.4m in 2002-03, a decrease of 6.6% on the June 2002 figure.
Direct employment in the Tasmanian mining industry has fallen over the past 30 years because of mine closures, productivity-driven retrenchment programs, and a trend towards the use of contractors. However over the last decade the decline in employment has halted and the total number of persons employed has remained above 1,500.
Contractors are classified according to the activity they are performing (for example, construction and transport) rather than to the industry they are serving (for example, mining). There were estimated to be 878 full-time equivalent contractors in the Tasmanian mining industry in 2002-03, a decrease of 6.3% on the 30 June 2002 figure of 934 (Source: Tasmanian Minerals Council Annual Report, 2003-04).