Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visits the Isaac Plains coal mine.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visits the Isaac Plains coal mine.

Call for bipartisan commitment to resources plan

MORE resource jobs, investment and exports could be headed our way if the two major political parties can come to an agreement on the future of the industry.

The Queensland Resources Council has repeated its calls for a bipartisan commitment to a Resources Industry Development Plan.

The plan would explore ways to expand the availability of land for mineral and energy resource exploration and development, strengthen export partnerships and identify and develop the skills and training needed for the future resources industry.

Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said the organisation also sought a commitment from political parties to streamline assessment and approval processes for resource projects, plus a 10-year freeze on royalty rates and thresholds for all resource commodities.

“The LNP has already committed to a 10-year royalty hold at current levels, so we’re looking for the Queensland Government to match this commitment to give potential resource investors greater certainty around development opportunities,” he said.

“While the government has committed to a three-year hold on coal and metals, and a five-year hold on gas and petroleum, we’re looking for a longer-term commitment to match the longer timeframes it takes to plan major resource developments.”

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visits the Isaac Plains coal mine.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visits the Isaac Plains coal mine.

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In Mackay yesterday, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was asked if her government would commit to working with the QRC on its industry development plan.

“We always work with the resources council, in fact, they have been part of our alliance with peak industry bodies right across Queensland, working together as part of our economic recovery plan,” she said.

The premier reaffirmed Labor’s commitment to support coal projects by announcing the final approvals for the Olive Downs coal mine, southeast of Moranbah.

“My government has always backed the resource industries,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“(There has been) $21 billion of private sector resource approvals given during our term of government, over 8000 jobs.

“There is no clearer commitment to the resources industry than by this government.”

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk speaking in Mackay.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk speaking in Mackay.

She said the coal used in steelmaking would be essential into the future.

“I know where the coal goes, it is made into steel,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Nearly every single one of us, every household uses steel in some form or another.

“Steel is going to be part of our lives for many years to come.

“No one has been able to come up with an alternative for making steel.”

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The LNP has accused the premier of blocking resource projects from her desk in Brisbane.

New Hope Group has been waiting for the State Government to approve stage three of the New Acland Mine for the past 13 years, but the project has been tied up in the courts.

“Annastacia Palaszczuk repeatedly moved the goalposts to stop the Adani project from going ahead, and now she’s doing the same thing by blocking the New Acland stage 3 mine expansion,” LNP leader Deb Frecklington said.

“Just like she did with Adani, Annastacia Palaszczuk is sacrificing resource jobs to save her own.”

When Ms Palaszczuk was asked about how Olive Downs differed from New Acland stage 3, she said there was no legal action at the Pembroke mine that she was aware of.