Policies that hinder the resources sector have been flagged to be the single biggest challenge facing the industry, a vocal advocate has said.
Queensland Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington said the latest Queensland Resources Council State of the Sector report shows mining executives are so concerned about anti-mining policies they rank it as the number-one problem facing the industry.
Worst result ever recorded
The March quarter survey shows “uncertain and/or poor state regulation jumped by six places from its low in the previous quarter”, representing the most negative result ever in recorded in the survey.
“It is common for uncertain regulation to remain in the top three negative factors for CEOs—yet this quarter’s result is particularly concerning given it’s the strongest negative result on record,” the report said.
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Investment in coal is unlikely
QRC members believe there is not likely to be investment in coal projects even though the coal market is strong because regulations are “constantly changing” and creating an “unpalatable environment”.
“Royalties and environmental regulations are the biggest concerns for us,” the report said.
Widespread support for royalty freeze
However, the report also shows the industry overwhelmingly supported the Liberal National Party’s (LNP’s) plan to freeze resources royalties for 10 years, with 85 per cent of CEOs saying stable royalties would help more projects get off the ground.
“Regulations have been used to unfairly tie up mining projects and destroy new jobs,” Frecklington said in a public statement. “I’m pleased that industry leaders overwhelmingly back the LNP’s plan to freeze royalties. Royalty certainty means more jobs for Queenslanders.”