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WA Premier Roger Cook aims to forge green steel future

West Australian Premier Roger Cook has set forth an ambitious vision for his state’s economic future, positioning it as a trailblazer in the burgeoning era of green steel production. 

Amid debates surrounding the Albanese government’s proposed $14 billion production credit plan and opposition from figures like Peter Dutton, Cook defended the state’s mining magnates, including Andrew Forrest and Gina Rinehart, as significant employers essential to WA’s economic fabric.

Highlighting the untapped potential of magnetite, a lesser-known iron ore variety gaining prominence in green steel production, Cook emphasized its capacity to not only bolster export revenues but also create a myriad of job opportunities within the state.

While acknowledging Western Australia’s heavy reliance on iron ore exports, which constituted the bulk of the state’s mining royalties in the past fiscal year, Cook stressed the imperative of economic diversification to safeguard against market fluctuations.

In the realm of federal politics, Cook voiced apprehension over the opposition’s stance on China and its potential ramifications for WA’s economy. He cautioned against policies that could undermine the mining industry, a cornerstone of the state’s employment sector.

With recent developments in the nickel mining sector, including deliberations by BHP regarding its WA operations, Cook expressed vigilance regarding potential closures and their socioeconomic impact. Nonetheless, he remained optimistic about the state’s resilience and its ability to seize opportunities for growth.

Approaching his first anniversary in office, Cook underscored the importance of sustaining momentum and harnessing the current wave of economic prosperity in WA. Confident in the state’s capacity to emerge as a preeminent economic force, he acknowledged the envy and admiration elicited from counterparts across the country.