NSW Resources Minister Chris Hartcher announced on Saturday the government was open to expressions of interest from miners wanting to explore Group 11 minerals, which includes uranium and thorium, The Australian Financial Review reported.
“We must look for every opportunity to join the resource boom under way in Western Australia, Queensland and South Australia,” Hartcher said in the statement.
The announcement follows the government’s controversial move to overturn the state’s 26-year ban on uranium exploration.
Legislation overturning the exploration ban passed through the state’s upper house unamended, despite opposition from Greens and Labor MPs, who said the government had no mandate.
O'Farrell originally put forth the motion to remove the ban in December last year after stating NSW would be ‘crazy not to look at whether this is a viable industry which would deliver jobs and revenue.’
Expressions of interest will be limited to areas of approximately 300sqkm or less, but there would be no limit on the number of separate applications parties can make.
Applications will close on November 13.