Mineral Development Taskforce Report

As sought by AMEC, the Northern Territory Government has prioritised how they will implement the Mineral Development Taskforce Report, launching a wesbite to detail the timing of delivery. The top two priorities were the royalty reform and the delivery of the 2016 election commitment to shift the regulation of mining from the Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade to the Department of Environment, Parks and Water Security. 

As advocated for by AMEC since the 2017 consultation on the NT Revenue, which saw the creation of the hybrid royalty – the NT Government is moving to a competitive flat ad valorem. This reform will make the Northern Territory more competitive.  The first stage has been focussed on the fundamental design of ad valorem mineral royalty scheme considering everything from payment schemes to whether it should be part of the Tax Act or separate.  Throughout this process, AMEC has met with the Treasury multiple times, held briefings for members and provided three submissions. 

AMEC’s preferred model is as follows: 

  • Fixed rate royalties for minerals, calculated on the contract price for minerals 
  • A contract is one with a genuine purchaser ‘at arm’s length’: a transaction between two independent parties in which both parties are acting in their own self-interest. Both the person liable to pay royalty and the purchaser are independent (unrelated), possess equal bargaining power, and not under pressure or duress from the opposing party, and are acting in their own self-interest to attain the most beneficial deal 
  • Royalties that are tiered based on processing and beneficiation. Similar to Western Australia: 7.5% for bulks, 5% for beneficiation (nickel/copper), and 2.5% for metal (gold) 
  • A fourth tier for chemicals royalties’ mirror the Western Australian feedstock model for lithium 
  • Industrial minerals, such as sand and gravel, have a quantity-based fixed price royalty 
  • The first 2,500 ounces of gold produced per financial year is exempt from royalties 
  • Simple and clear deductions: Transportation of minerals to port and packaging 
  • An optional, once off, two-year deferral for royalty payments from the start of mining enabled via Treasurer’s Instructions
  • Ministerial discretion to grant a concession in exceptional circumstances, a concession that is tabled in Parliament and must have a fixed period

The Government has committed the necessary resources and is working towards the NT royalty reforms being in effect by 1 July 2023. The unanswered question that remains is the specific details of the rates.  AMEC will continue to advocate for a competitive rating structure that will draw investment to the Territory. 

Proposed Environmental Regulatory Reforms

Since the December 2020 consultation paper on proposed environmental regulatory reforms for mining activities in the Northern Territory, AMEC has met regularly with DEPWS and DITT since the initial reforms to the Environmental Protection Act amendments passed in 2019. The reforms passed the NT Parliament in the week of 4 December and include: 

  • Two controlling Acts – EP Act and MTA 
  • Tiered environmental (mining) licences under EP Act 
  • Mineral titles and commencement notice under MTA 
  • New legacy mine remediation Act 
  • MMA to be repealed 


Livestock Act 2008 Amendments

The NT Cabinet recently approved the drafting of the proposed amendments to the Livestock Act 2008 and regulations. The Department is looking to undertake full consultation and engagement of the exposure draft amending Bill in December 2023. As December rapidly passes, it is anticipated this consultation will be moved to late February.  The Bill is anticipated to pass Parliament early in the new term. 

As we enter 2024, the priorities for AMEC will be the raft of incoming reform and the Election.  Reforms to the Minerals Titles Act (2010), the Northern Territory Aboriginal Sacred Sites Act 1989, and the Water Act are anticipated in the next six months of the year. All of which will be resolved before the Northern Territory Election is held on 24 August 2024. AMEC will be working with our Northern Territory Advisory Committee to draft a platform articulating our priorities.

AMEC has made the following submissions on behalf of member companies:  

Out and About NT

Associate Members