Reverse the Curse: Maximizing the potential of resource-driven economies

According to a recent report from think-tank Chatham House, arbitration cases have increased nearly fourfold between 2001 and 2010 in the mining sector, reflecting tensions among stakeholders which escalated with the commodity price boom. The rise in commodity prices increased popular expectations, and governments accordingly came under pressure to show that citizens would receive greater … Read more

Qld: Government grants Environmental Approval for North-Queensland projects

On 11 October 2013, Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt (Minister) approved three North-Queensland projects. The Minister approved: the Abbot Point capital dredging program which involves removal of 3 million cubic meters of spoil in respect of Terminals 0, 2 and 3, making the Port of Abbot Point one of the world’s largest coal ports; Adani’s … Read more

Australia-Korea FTA concluded

On 5 December 2013, Australia and South Korea concluded negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA). Trade with South Korea was valued at AU$31.9 billion in 2012, making Korea Australia’s fourth biggest two-way trading partner (following China, Japan and the United States) and third largest export market. As a result of the FTA, tariffs will … Read more

Report of the Victorian Gas Market Taskforce released

The Victorian Gas Market Taskforce, which was led by former Howard Government Minister Peter Reith, has released its final report. The Taskforce was commissioned by the former Victorian Premier, Ted Baillieu, in December 2012 to consider ways to improve the operation and efficiency of the east coast gas market, and increase gas supply. The recommendations … Read more

Ghana plans to reintroduce a mining windfall tax

The Budget and Economic Policy Statement of 2013 reiterates the willingness of the government to implement a windfall tax on mining profits. The windfall profit tax was introduced in the Budget and Economic Policy Statement of 2012 and was debated, but not implemented, by Parliament in 2012. The 2012 proposal was that all entities engaged … Read more

Qld: Government releases Galilee Basin Development Strategy

On 7 November 2013, the Queensland Premier, Campbell Newman, released the Galilee Basin Development Strategy (Strategy). The Strategy acknowledges the long-term economic benefits that opening up the Galilee Basin to mining would bring to Queensland and is designed to support and encourage business and industry to develop key infrastructure across the region. The Strategy details … Read more

Victoria to raise the bar for mining exemptions

The Victorian Minister for Energy and Resources recently introduced the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Amendment Bill 2013 (Vic) (the Amendment Bill) into the Victorian Parliament. The Amendment Bill, if passed, will likely make it more difficult for land to be declared exempt from exploration and mining licences. The Minister will now be required to consider … Read more