Queensland’s 2020-21 Budget is set to deliver more than $29 million in exploration grants, initiatives and COVID-19 support for the mining sector over the next few years.
Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the budget boost for exploration would help drive future resource projects and the thousands of jobs that would flow from them.
“This year’s budget will invest $9 million to help explorers discover new economy minerals that are high in demand globally in the renewables and tech sectors,” he said.
“We have already fast-tracked $2 million in spending earlier this year to understand the potential for rare earth minerals.
“We will pump in another $11.7 million in the following three years as new economy minerals will deliver the jobs of the future.”
In 2020-21, another $3.3 million will help boost gas and mineral exploration through the Strategic Resources Exploration Program.
“In addition, to help keep explorers on the hunt we’ve also waived $9.8 million in state rent to back explorers and have frozen exploration fees and charges until 1 July 2021,” Mr Stewart said.
He said $845,000 would be provided to make data collected from exploration projects freely available from January 2021 via the government’s geological database.
“Everything learned from the exploration projects will be shared with the whole sector, helping to stimulate more mines, jobs and exports for Queensland.
“Gas infrastructure will also be critical, that is why we are investing $5 million over the next two years on investigating potential new gas pipeline infrastructure to connect gas reserves in the Bowen Basin to domestic customers and exports.
“Investing in infrastructure and supporting exploration is fundamental to maintaining ongoing resources investment and jobs into the future.”