ANTHONY Roberts has been sworn in as Resources, Energy and Special Minister of State following the resignation of former minister Chris Hartcher from the New South Wales state government frontbench.

In a ceremony held early last week, Mr Roberts’ was appointed the state’s new minister for resources, and his former position as NSW Minister for Fair Trading was inherited by new cabinet member Stuart Ayres.

The resource industry welcomed the appointment of Mr Roberts, with NSW Minerals Council CEO Stephen Galilee expressing plans to continue its work in conjunction with the state government.

“The $24.5 billion NSW mining industry is the engine room of the NSW economy, delivering around 85% of the state’s electricity and our most valuable exports,” Mr Galilee said.

“Mining also delivers around 91,000 jobs across the state and $1.3 billion in annual mining royalties helps pay for infrastructure and services.

“Mining has contributed much to the historic development of NSW and continues to underpin the economic strength of regional towns and communities across NSW, including in the Hunter and Illawarra and across the Central West out to Broken Hill.

“We look forward to working with Mr Roberts to keep mining strong to continue delivering jobs, investment and economic growth for NSW.”

The frontbench appointments came after Mr Hartcher resigned from his role with the state government following corruption allegations from the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).

Police minister Mike Gallacher inherited Mr Hartcher’s former role as Minister for the Central Coast, and hospitality minister George Souris inherited the Minister for Hunter portfolio.