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Economic Development

The Shire has a population of 13,000 and boasts some of the world's largest open cut mines, extensive Oil and Gas operations, the largest pastoral leases and cattle stations - all set against a beautiful and ancient landscape that includes Karijini National Park, the Mackerel Islands and the incredible history of the region.

  • In 2018, operations within the Shire produced over 40 million tonnes of Iron Ore – valued over $30 billion.
  • The Shire’s mining sector represents over 18% of WA’s mining industry value.
  • 39% of all jobs in the Pilbara Region are located in the Shire of Ashburton.
  • The Shire boasts an unemployment rate of 0.6% with the State average closer to 6.3%.

It is a great time to be living in the Pilbara, with many families taking the opportunity to create financial security and for many local service providers able to establish a sound business. In order to sustain these local economies we need to focus on creating environments that are reasonably sheltered from the ebb and flow of industry.

The more we can develop economic diversity the better chance we have of building communities, and a region, that is solid in its foundation.

As part of our commitment to building strong, sustainable economies and local communities, the Shire of Ashburton is proud to be formally recognised as being Small Business Friendly.

To learn more about our economic profile, our strategy and intitiaves, as well as the opportunities available within the Shire of Ashburton, download the documents below. 

If you’re looking to start a home based business, you can learn more about the process and permits. 

Small Business Friendly

The Shire of Ashburton is a Small Business Friendly Local Government. This new initiative, developed by the Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC), formally recognises local governments that are demonstrating, or working towards, ‘better practice’ in engaging with their small business community.

The Shire can play an important facilitating role for businesses to be established and grow by providing and promoting a wide variety of small business friendly initiatives from a cross collaboration of different Shire Departments. It’s all about reducing the ‘red tape’ and facilitating business growth.

By signing the Charter the Shire of Ashburton commits to assisting small businesses by undertaking a set of key business initiatives. 

Last updated: 16 October 2019