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1400 mining and exploration permits have been signed-off in one week, creating a flurry of activity in the sector.
The Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Andrew Cripps said: “We have listened to requests from the resources sector for faster, more efficient approval timeframes and we are delivering.”
He said the new process on applications will make mining “simpler and more profitable”.
Mr Cripps says the changes will remove the ‘red tape’ surrounding the approval process, but claimed the rigorous environmental, native title and land access assessments would stay in place.
“The more streamlined process means exploration permits subject to native title can be decided in less than 12 months, while permits not subject to native title can be determined in six months or sooner,” Cripps said.
The government said last week that it was searching to halve permit approval waiting times.
Waiting times cut from years to months
It currently takes an average 22 months to get a mining lease/permit application to where it can be granted by the Queensland government or not.
Mining companies will now be able to find out in only 90 days whether an exploration permit has been approved ““ in cases where there is no native title conflict or environmental issues a mining permit can be granted as soon as the explorer pays the rent for the new mine site.
“only one in every 200 granted exploration permits ever goes on to become a mine”
In cases where native title applies, the streamlined laws will start the required processes and engage landholders to talk about compensation much earlier than before.
A granted exploration permit is not a right to mine, and the Queensland Resources Council estimates that approximately only one in every 200 granted exploration permits ever goes on to become a mine.
Resource industry employer group, AMMA has welcomed the moves.
“AMMA commends the Queensland Government for leading the way on more efficient and competitive regulatory and administrative processes,” AMMA executive director Scott Barklamb said.
He said he was confident these proactive moves by the states, when implemented alongside the Abbott Government`s Exploration Development Incentive scheme, will breathe new life into Australia`s mining exploration sector resulting in more mines and more mining jobs for everyone.
New Copper find at Mt Gordon
Newly discovered reserves at Aditya Birla`s copper mine 160km north of Mt Isa, could result in the re-opening of the Mt Gordon mine.
The Mt Gordon operation was put into care and maintenance mode in April 2013.
Aditya Birla said at the time the decision to shut the mine was made because of falling copper prices, which plummeted in June, but recent exploration efforts have identified what appears to be a new reserve and additional mineralisation to the south of the lease.
According to the North West Star, the find could add another 16 years mine life to the operation if it was ramped up once again.
The North West reports the mine estimated if production was to restart the number of mining jobs available could be more than 500.
Roy Hill mine drilling contract
The contract will run for 3 years with an option for a further 2 years. WA mining jobs will become available as Ranger begins operations in November.
BHP-Billiton, Rio Tinto and Fortescue to benefit
BHP-Billiton, Rio Tinto and Fortescue are just three of the big miners that stand to benefit from the state and federal government’s proposed changes to permit approval times.
New starters searching to get into mining in Queensland need to be aware of these requirements.
- In most cases you may have to complete a Mining Induction course (You may not be allowed on a mining site in Queensland without this qualification). This is a 2 day course that focuses on Work Health & Safety and educates you about everyday life in mining ““ including mining terminology, procedures, safety and compliance policies.
- You must have a current Coal Board Medical certificate, as this is a Queensland Government requirement.
- If you are a machine operator you will also have to transfer your civil machinery operator tickets to Black Coal Competencies.
Before you start applying for mining jobs, there are other considerations like having a mining focused resume prepared for you to give you every chance of getting that all important interview.
iMINCO have created lots of tips and information on how to write a good mining resume as well as some vital information on how to get the most out of your interview, because we know this is where many people need help.
Reference: Exploration Set To Increase Mining Jobs