QRC calls for 10-year freeze on Queensland resources royalties

BHP Mitsubishi Alliance's metallurgical coal mine in Bowen Basin, Queensland. Image: QRC

The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) is calling on the Queensland Government to freeze all resource royalties for the next decade in a bid to help the regions recover from COVID-19.

QRC reached an arrangement with the Queensland Government in May to keep the royalty rates of coal and minerals stable for three years, on the condition millions of dollars in contributions from QRC member companies would be supplied a regional infrastructure fund.

Under the arrangement, the Queensland Government would invest $30 million to improve economic and social infrastructure across resource communities, with leading mining companies expected to match the fund with $70 million voluntary payment.

QRC chief executive Ian Macfarlane asked the government to extend the royalty freeze on all resources to 10 years, which matches the commitment made by the Liberal National Party (LNP) as part of their election campaign last year.

QRC’s call follows yesterday’s announcement that the Queensland Government will keep gas royalty rates fixed for the next five years.

“The government has recognised that stable royalties provide greater investment and employment certainty for the resources industry. The LNP promised 12 months ago, if elected, it would stabilise royalties for 10 years,” Macfarlane said.

“The resources sector has been paying more than $5 billion in royalties to the Queensland Government to reinvest in services and infrastructure for all Queenslanders.

“The role of the resources sector is even more important to Queensland with COVID-19’s impact across the state’s economy. The resources sector employs one in seven jobs in Queensland and it contributes more than $220 million to the state’s economy each week.”

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