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The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimated that there were 1,103 people directly employed in the mining industry at 30 June 2000, an increase of 22% on the 30 June 1999 figure. This increase was due to the expansion of copper ore and iron ore mining activity.
Direct employment in the Tasmanian mining industry has fallen over the past 20 years because of mine closures, productivity-driven retrenchment programs, and a trend towards the use of contractors. Contractors are classified 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 588 full-time equivalent contractors in the Tasmanian mining industry in 2000-01, a decrease of 2% on the 30 June 2000 figure of 603 (Tasmanian Minerals Council).