​NSW Minerals Council slams Australia Institute over job figures

NSW Minerals Council slams Australia Institute over job figures

The NSW Minerals Council has slammed The Australia Institute over incorrect figures relating to NSW mining projects.

Speaking in the Newcastle Herald yesterday, TAI spokesperson Rod Campbell admitted to errors in submissions to the NSW Planning Department relating to a number of coal mine expansions.

Campbell admitted that the figures submitted relating to the Bulga Optimisation Project, the Stratford Mine extension in Gloucester, and the both the Angus Place and Springvale Colliery expansion near Lithgow were incorrect, particularly in regards to how expenses are deducted from coal royalties, in essence underestimating the mines’ royalty payments.

The NSW Minerals Council has slammed TAI, with the group’s CEO Stephen Galilee stating: “this is the final nail in the coffin as far as The Australia Institute’s economic credibility is concerned.”

The statements by TAI come only a day after a review of their mining report revealed a number of financial errors in unravelling the state of mining subsidies.

According to the report’s author, the former head of the NSW Treasury Michael Schur the report “grossly exaggerates the level of subsidy to the mining and resources sector” and that the groups analysis of State and Territory budgets “was fundamentally flawed” with the actual government subsidies “amounting to no more than a few percentage point of the $17.6 billion claimed by the Institute”.

“The Australia Institute have been clearly caught attempting a massive economic fraud to attack the mining industry.”

Schur added that while exposing corporate fraud is important, The Australia’s Institute’s report on mining subsidies was incorrect.

He went on to explain the “claims were based on a flawed analytical framework, and in the main, unfounded”.

It followed statements last month by the former head of ABARE Dr. Brian Fisher, where he refuted TAI claims if poor economic modelling regarding his figures on mining projects in the Hunter valley.

The NSW Minerals Council has called on TAI to apologise to miners in NSW, at the say time asking “how many other times has TAI used dodgy economic numbers; how many other projects have been affected?”

It went on to call on TAI “to conduct a comprehensive audit of all its anti-mining reports and submissions and come clean on the full extent”.

However, in his admittance of error in the Newcastle Herald, Campbell hit out at the state of royalties in NSW, stating that only two per cent of NSW Government revenue is generated by coal mining royalties.

“Government ministers claimed in Parliament recently that it was coal royalties that are ‘ensuring ongoing funding for the construction of vital infrastructure such as roads, schools and hospitals’.

“Ninety eight per cent of the time, this just isn’t true. NSW government ministers either don’t know very much about their own finances, or they’re deliberately exaggerating the importance of the coal industry,” Campbell said.

According to recent figures the NSW coal industry paid approximately $1.2 billion in coal royalties.

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