Mining industry bigger than ever

QUEENSLAND'S mining industry workforce - employing 72,400 workers - is larger than in any other time in its history.

ABS figures reveal that 12,600 new jobs - or 21% more workers - in the industry at the end of May 2012 than for the same time in 2011.

The same set of data found that for the 12 months until March 2012, $21.7 billion in private investment was funnelled into the sector, about two-and-a-half times that for the year before.

However, Mines Minister Andrew Cripps said it was no time for the government to be complacent.

"Mining continues to be the engine room for jobs growth in Queensland and a major contributor to the economic lifeblood of our communities, but we must not take its performance for granted," he said.

Mr Cripps said the government would work to cut red tape and regulation to encourage the industry.

Looking to join the thousands working in Queensland's mining industry? lists hundreds of current vacancies in the sector.