Nine exploration companies will head to the North West Minerals Province to find new deposits of copper, gold and base metals, thanks to the latest round of exploration grants, worth $1.13M.
Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said that while the North West Minerals Province provided a golden opportunity for explorers, the positive flow-on effects for local business and the communities added to the impact.
“Funding through the Collaborative Exploration Initiative allows companies to kick-start projects that may have never have got off the ground due to the costs and risks involved in exploring in remote regions of Queensland,” Dr Lynham said.
“We have to get innovative if we are going to get these projects moving, and the Collaborative Exploration Initiative is an excellent example of how a small investment reaps big rewards for Queensland.
“It’s for this reason that we have expanded the program to include other forms of exploration like geophysics and geochemistry – rather than only the traditional drilling methods.
“Queensland explorers are using the complete array of techniques to make discoveries and so the funding initiative has been updated the reflect this,” Dr Lynham said.
The program has generated 48 new mineralisation discoveries over the past 10 years, including a contribution towards Australia’s largest copper-cobalt resource by Aeon Metals, and the Maronan deposit worth up to $9 billion.
Since it started, 58 companies – most junior explorers – have shared in funding to commence exploration. The companies have invested about another $21 million invested in Queensland by the companies themselves – a leverage of 3:1.