BMA admits it made mistakes in communicating FIFO practices

BMA admits it could have done a better job at communicating when it changed its fly-in, fly-out practices.

Speaking at a Queensland Resources Council forum on Friday, BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance asset president Lucas Dow said if he had his time again, they would have done a "better job" at communicating their push towards making some of their mines comprise mostly FIFO workers.

In responding to a panel question about earning a "social licence" to operate in communities, Mr Dow said: "We've been in the news quite a bit of late, around, for example, FIFO practices."

He said the "100% FIFO" attitude was completely false; a message that could have been communicated more effectively.

"We've got local contractors engaged at those places, so it's probably closer to around 80% (FIFO) 20% (local)," he said.

"We haven't been nearly as effective in telling our story as we could have been.

"We will need to do that and build on that."

Mr Dow said they had been burdened with the "logical argument" as opposed to connecting with communities on a broader scale.

He also said coal companies did not pat themselves on the back as much as they should.

"We haven't been nearly as proud as we should be in terms of our contribution to the economy," he said. "We are a significant part. We are the engine of the state and I think we should be proud of that." - APN NEWSDESK