Australian governments run the risk of losing key overseas mining investments by not supporting companies in building resource related infrastructure, economic consultant Michael Campbell told MINING DAILY.
“These companies are often global and they own resources all around the world,” he said.
“Governments should keep in mind that if approvals processes get too complex or take too long these companies may look at the financials and say, ‘We tried with this Australian resource, but we think we can get a better return from the resource overseas.’
“So they are not going to invest and develop the Australian resource, but are going to take their money and jobs overseas.”
Campbell’s company, AEC Group, is an economics consultancy that is currently working on an economic development strategy for the Roma regional council in Queensland’s Surat Basin.
AEC has found that because much of the region’s financial activity is being driven by the mining of thermal coal and coal seam gas, the Surat Basin needs to expand its related infrastructure.
“If infrastructure is not put in place it could have a potentially detrimental impact on those resource developments,” Campbell said.
“The Government has a role to play in supporting the mining process by ensuring where they can that ports, pipelines, roads and other associated infrastructure is being provided for companies to unlock those resources.
“There is a need to fund the infrastructure to help the mining companies and also to provide investment and jobs to the local community.”