The minerals exploration sector underpins the sustainability and growth of the mining industry which is considered by many to be the ‘engine room’ of the Australian economy. Queensland is rich in natural resources of metallic and non-metallic minerals and is recognised globally as a leading destination for mining and resources investment. Its   diverse geology and massive resource potential place it in the world’s top five regions for the production of lead, bauxite, zinc and sliver.  

The minerals industry makes a significant contribution to the Queensland economy.  Queensland earns royalties from the extraction of coal, base and precious metals, bauxite, petroleum and gas, mineral sands and other minerals. Revenue from coal, base and precious metals and other minerals is forecast to grow 29.0% and exceed $4 billion in 2018-19.  The industry directly employs over 30,000 people and is directly and indirectly responsible for over 370,000 jobs or more than 11% of Queensland’s total employment. 

The resource sector also provides a number of other economic and social dividends in remote regional and community areas. including training and employment opportunities, indigenous education, training and partnership programs. The industry also provides valuable financial and other support to a number of charitable, welfare, community and sporting organisations and is a major driver of rural, regional and community development. 

Representing explorers and miners AMEC works with the Queensland Government to drive exploration, improve international competitiveness, create jobs and attract mining and mineral exploration investment to the State. 

AMEC’s work in Queensland

Queensland Battery Minerals Strategy 
AMEC is currently developing a Battery/Strategic Minerals Strategy for Queensland to take to the Government to highlight the investment opportunities for the State. AMEC is currently consulting with explorers, miners, processors and potential end users to finalise the strategy before presentation to the Government. AMEC believes that with the large range of resources available Queensland could progress down the
battery minerals value chain beyond mining to electro-chemical processing and on to the creation of niche batteries

Boardroom Lunch
A Boardroom Lunch was held at Parliament House with Dale Last, the Queensland Shadow Mines Minister, as guest speaker. 14 AMEC members, staff and invited guests attended and discussed industry issues with the Shadow Minister. Members were given an overview of the Opposition’s resource policies and were able to provide feedback on several issues. Mr Last acknowledged AMEC’s role as the peak body for explorers and junior and mid-level miners in Queensland and said he would be consulting AMEC further in the lead up to the next election.

AMEC members have been reporting increasing difficulties around meeting landholder bio-security requirements and being able to comply with the various Quality Assurance programs during access negotiations with landholders. To address the problem AMEC is scheduling meetings with Agforce to gain a better understanding of what is actually required under the programs and clarify any access issues. Following these meetings, AMEC will provide an update to members on the matter. 

Lunch and Learn Forum
AMEC and HopgoodGanim recently held a successful ‘Lunch and Learn’ forum for members and industry covering changes to Land Access and Conduct and Compensation Agreements (CCA). Damian Roe from HopgoodGanim and Warwick Squire from the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy (DNRME) provided updates on the latest changes to CCA costs, as well as information on the new Land Access and Compensation guidelines and templates. As a result of the changes, landholder’s reasonable legal and professional costs will now have to be paid even if no agreement is signed. This will also apply for those negotiations already underway as of 19 April. Copies of the presentations were made available to the forum attendees. AMEC has signaled its concerns with the new requirements to senior department officers and the Minister’s office and will be pursuing this issue as a priority.

State Budget 
The June State Budget had little immediate impact on mineral explorers and miners but sent ominous signals for future budgets. A royalty increase was a possibility but after speculation about a possible increase in coal royalties, the government instead blindsided the LNG industry with a 25% increase in royalty rates. Importantly in this context, funding has been maintained for the $3.6m Collaborative Exploration Initiative, as well as the $3.35m Geoscience
Data Modernisation Program. Logistical bottlenecks were also targeted with $30m allocated to the construction of a new common user rail freight terminal in Townsville and to reducing rail access charges on the Mt. Isa - Townsville line

Queensland Pre-budget Submission

Queensland Advisory Committees
The Queensland Advisory Committee provides advice to the AMEC Council and Executive and develops policy on state specific issues related to mining and exploration, and other issues that may impact on the Association’s membership. Our Advisory Committee meets quarterly and is chaired by Steve Jukes.

Events in state
AMEC runs a wide range of events in Queensland each year for the benefit the industry and our members. Events include seminars, investor briefings and exclusive member-only events such as sundowners, boardroom lunches, seminars, and information briefings. To find out more about events in state, please see our events page.

Membership in Queensland
AMEC membership is open to all companies working in and for the mineral exploration and mining industry. Full membership is for mineral explorers, emerging producers and miners, with Associate membership open to companies who service the mining and mineral exploration industry. Whether your organisation provides legal services, undertakes drilling, financial advice, or other services that support our industry, you can be an AMEC associate member. 

To learn more about our work and the benefits of membership in Queensland, please contact the Queensland  Manager Les Cox , or AMEC Membership and Business Development Manager Richard Aguilera.