Resources Sector Takes Another Hit From Labor

by Ted Sorensen

Labor changes to resources legislation could allow extreme green groups to abuse objections process

  • Resource sector confidence at a five-year lowThe resources sector has taken another hit from the Palaszczuk Government, with Labor legislation passing through Parliament that will impact negatively on Queensland’s reputation as a state which businesses want to invest in and create jobs.

    Shadow Mines Minister Andrew Cripps, said the process of modernising the legislation that governs the resources sector in Queensland was started by the previous LNP Government but took an unfortunate step backwards when Labor’s bill passed.

    “The changes to the notifications and objections process and the restricted land framework will impact on Queensland’s reputation as a place in which to invest in the resources sector and will certainly cost jobs,” Mr Cripps said.

    “In the last 16 months, the Palaszczuk Government has done nothing but undermine confidence in the resources sector in Queensland, resulting in growing uncertainty, reduced investment and lost jobs, particularly in regional areas.”

    Mr Cripps said since February 2015, Labor had:

  • banned uranium mining in Queensland (again),
  • unnecessarily delayed the expansion of the port at Abbot Point,
  • unnecessarily delayed New Hope’s Acland stage 3 coal project,
  • unnecessarily interfered with the approval of Glencore as the preferred proponent of the Aurukun bauxite deposit,
  • a bill to shut down sand mining on North Stradbroke Island by 2019.”This is the track record of the Palaszczuk Government when it comes to the resources sector in Queensland,” he said.

    “Labor’s incompetence is reflected in the results of a recent industry survey which reported confidence among resource companies at a near five-year low.

    “If companies do not have confidence, they do not invest in the state – it is called sovereign risk and it has become a real issue in Queensland under the Palaszczuk Government.

    “These laws have just increased that level of uncertainty again.”

    Mr Cripps said the LNP had pursued an important reform agenda to modernise the legislative framework that governed the resources sector in Queensland, but the changes were misrepresented by Labor and green groups.

    “The former LNP Government’s changes sought to limit opportunities for extreme green activists and anti-economic development groups to stop or delay resource projects by lodging frivolous objections.

    “Mines Minister Anthony Lynham, has confirmed that anyone anywhere in Queensland, in Australia or around the world will have the opportunity to object to any resource project in Queensland – it’s absolutely ridiculous.”

    Mr Cripps said the LNP’s reforms were intended to prevent the abuse of the objections process and allow genuine landholder and community concerns to be raised while Labor’s amendments could be abused by green groups.”

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