Central Queensland, Australia played host to a delegation of international mining representatives in August 2014, as part of the Community Aspects of Resource Developments (CARD) course and study tour organised by IM4DC.
A total of 20 delegates from Africa, Asia, South America and the near Pacific region visited city and shire councils, mine sites, government agencies, and community and indigenous groups. They spoke to community members and local government about the influences that extractive industries can have on communities in Australia and the measures taken by stakeholders to promote positive and mitigate negative outcomes.
The four-week CARD program that looked at the complexity of issues surrounding the governance of mining projects and the opportunities and social challenges faced on the ground by all stakeholders.
The course had two specific objectives: firstly, to better understand international companies in the resource sector and the business imperative for establishing a “social licence to operate” and secondly, to equip participants to better deal with complex community relations issues.
There was a strong focus on issues of relevance to government and community stakeholders, and how social issues are being addressed by industry at the local, national and international levels.
The course was aimed at assisting participants to develop knowledge and skills to identify and analyse community issues, and to formulate appropriate responses to these issues, as a way of improving life for their own people back in their home countries.
Delegates heard about the challenges and successes of the resource industries in Central Queensland and were given the opportunity to meet and hear from a variety of groups and organisations in places like Gladstone, Rockhampton, Mount Morgan, Woorabinda, Blackwater and Emerald.