Last week Karratha was announced as the host destination for an international development and mining conference, which is exciting news.

The announcement was made at the 3rd Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Meeting of Mining Regions and Cities in Skelleftea in Sweden.

The OECD is an intergovernmental economic organisation, made up of 36 member countries including Australia, which aims to stimulate economic progress and world trade.

City of Karratha chief executive officer Chris Adams and I were guest speakers at the three-day Meeting of Mining Regions and Cities last week, which was a very valuable experience.

Hundreds of delegates from across the world spent three days learning from leaders and policy-makers about improving regional development outcomes for areas with specialised mining and extractive industries, which is pertinent to the Pilbara’s resources sector.

This year’s agenda focused on how to attract, retain and develop a skilled workforce, which is very applicable for our region, particularly as we move into another upcycle of the resources sector.

Securing hosting rights for next year’s event is a coup for the City of Karratha and opportunity to promote our status of a City of the North to an international contingent of representatives from all levels of government and the private sector.

Previously, the Meeting of Mining Regions and Cities has held in Chile, in 2017, and in Darwin, in 2018, so it will be the first time it has travelled to the North West.

An estimated 400 delegates will descend on the Red Earth Arts Precinct in July 2020, and we expect these high-profile visitors to stimulate our local accommodation and businesses through accommodation, dining and tours. There is also the potential to generate economic investment.

We look forward to extending the delegates a warm Karratha welcome.