WA Aboriginal heritage legislation a positive step   

7 March 2019

The Discussion Paper for new Aboriginal Heritage legislation launched today by WA Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Hon Ben Wyatt MLA, has been acknowledged by the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) as a ‘positive step forward’ for both industry and Aboriginal people.

“A new Aboriginal heritage legislative framework can be beneficial for all stakeholders, and lead to improved social, economic and cultural outcomes, as well as better protecting heritage values,” says Chief Executive Officer of AMEC, Warren Pearce. 

The latest Discussion Paper aims to create legislation to ‘recognise, protect, manage and celebrate the places and objects that are important to Aboriginal culture and to also provide a clear and efficient framework for other land users to engage with’.

“AMEC made a comprehensive submission to the original Discussion Paper last year, where we called for increased clarity, certainty, efficiency and cost effectiveness of cultural heritage processes.”

“But this legislation will also need to be supported by efficient administrative processes and systems.”

AMEC has also expressed an interest to be involved in education and awareness campaigns conducted by Government on potential future land uses, including explaining the clear differences between mining production and preliminary mineral exploration activities. 

“We look forward to working closely with the Government and Aboriginal people as this process continues to meet the objectives stated in the discussion paper for the benefit of all involved,” says Mr Pearce.