Queensland’s resources exploration industry needs State Government support if it is to survive and discover the state’s next wave of job-creating resource projects.
LNP Shadow Minister for Mines Dale Last today joined the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) for a virtual boardroom meeting and heard its fears for the future of resource jobs in Queensland.
“Small exploration companies have been finding it increasingly hard to work in Queensland, but the covid-19 crisis has turned a difficult time into a crisis,” said Mr Last.
“The coming six months may be the toughest time ever for the industry, with little to no opportunity for capital raising.
“I’ve heard first-hand from companies who are reducing staff and struggling to stay afloat.
“The mining exploration industry is essential to the development of the future mining projects that Queensland desperately needs.
“Without explorers we won’t have the mines that create thousands of jobs and pay the royalties that build new schools, hospitals, roads and fund extra police. It’s that simple.
“It’s the key industry propping our economy up right now but that doesn’t mean the explorers finding the Queensland next generation of mining projects should be neglected.
“While the LNP promised a 10-year royalty freeze to provide investment certainty, Labor are clearly considering more royalty hikes that will cost jobs.”
Mr Last called on the Palaszczuk Labor Government to deliver temporary freezes on exploration tenements rentals and work program commitments.
“It’s completely unreasonable to expect companies to pay rent on something they can’t access,” Mr Last said.
“Any reduction or relief of these fees will give some certainty to exploration companies.
“Other mining states like South Australia and Western Australia have already stepped up to waive or defer charges, but unfortunately there has been nothing here in Queensland.
“Queensland explorers are just asking for a fair go so they can survive and develop jobs and mines for Queensland’s future.”