The Western Australian Government has increased its contribution to the Exploration Incentive Scheme (EIS) by $2.5 million, just days after it opened for applications.
Starting in 2021-22, the increase in EIS funding from $10 million to $12.5 million will aim to further incentivise investment in Western Australia’s mining industry.
Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston said Western Australia’s mining industry is thriving.
“This additional funding to $12.5 million a year could help find the next big resource discovery, which in turn leads to new mines and new jobs for Western Australians,” he said.
“The McGowan Government will continue supporting the exploration and resources industries as the state recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Chamber of Minerals and Energy Western Australia chief executive Paul Everingham said exploration is absolutely critical to the long-term success of the mining and resources sector in the state.
“Projects around the state, which provide jobs for hundreds of thousands of Western Australians and so many community and economic benefits, all have to start somewhere – and that start is often exploration,” he said.
“As highlighted in today’s announcement, the Nova nickel mine, the Tropicana gold mine, Gruyere and the Bellevue Gold Project have all originated from the Exploration Incentive Scheme.
“We look forward to this funding increase helping pave the way for future operations that will add to the $140 billion of projects currently in the WA mining and resources pipeline.”
As part of the WA Recovery Plan, the EIS received a one-off funding of $5 million in 2020-21, which temporarily increased the scheme’s budget from $10 million to $15 million.
For the past two EIS rounds, the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety has received a significantly higher number of applications.
A recent independent study, covering the first 10 years of the EIS, reiterated the robust economic benefits of the EIS, with every dollar invested resulting in a $31 return.
Applications for Round 24 of the EIS close at 4pm on Friday August 27.