Victorian Government fails to listen to Industry risking future investment
The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) has condemned the Victorian Government for ignoring recommendations to ease the blow of the incoming gold royalty for industry, and ensure the winnings stay in regional Victoria.
“Just as the gold industry was rediscovering Victoria’s potential and investors were starting to take notice, the Victorian Government has removed the exemption and imposed a royalty rate of 2.75% of the net market value of gold for miners producing over 2,500 ounces of gold in a year,” said Warren Pearce, Chief Executive of AMEC.
“Any new tax is concerning for a business, but particularly one with zero notice or prior consultation and when Government has ignored recommendations to ease the impact of the new royalty.”
“The Government’s failure to take on board any of the recommendations from industry, demonstrates that this post decision consultation was nothing more than a sham.”
“The minerals industry accepts that it is appropriate for mining companies to pay a royalty for minerals. The nil royalty for gold in Victoria had become an anomaly that doesn’t reflect contemporary practice and was out of step with community and industry expectations. However, in setting royalty rates the Government must give consideration to the conditions of the state and industry.”
“It is disappointing that the Government has failed to make any changes to ease the introduction of the royalty and prevent the loss of new and future gold investment in Victoria.”
AMEC made recommendations to ease the impact of the new royalty including a reduction in the rate, staged implementation, and providing an exemption and/or waiving of the royalty during the first two years of a new mine.
“Recommendations were also made to show that Victoria is ‘open of business’ for the gold industry by ensuring that the income from the royalty stays in rural and regional Victoria to support those communities with the infrastructure and community investment,” said Mr Pearce.