Queensland Government has introduced a new concession that enables coal explorers to save up to A$114m ($86m) amid mining downturn globally.
Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Dr Anthony Lynham said that the concession will provide financial relief to the explorers.
"This concession will provide up to a 50% reduction over 2016 and 2017 in the expenditure that a coal explorer is required to commit under their exploration permit.
"For example, say there is a coal explorer in the Bowen Basin who holds multiple exploration permits with a combined committed expenditure of A$2m for its milestone period within 2016 / 2017."
The newly introduced concession is applicable from 1 January 2016 and enables coal explorers to stay away from spending to meet their exploration permit conditions.
Mineral explorers in Queensland are already enjoying a coal concession, which is expected to save them A$160m ($121m) over two years.
"We’ve taken on board what industry, including the Queensland Exploration Council, the Queensland Resources Council and the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies, is telling us, and that is explorers are under stress with low commodity prices and difficulty attracting investment capital.
With the new concession in place, coal explorers will have the flexibility to respond to investment conditions and spend their exploration dollars on the ground where required.
Responding to the Queensland Government’s concession programme the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) CEO Simon Bennison said: "Minister Anthony Lynham had originally announced this programme for the minerals sector to provide some relief to exploration companies in Queensland that have been actively working to grow the industry.
"The Department of Natural Resources and Mines has worked with AMEC to ensure that explorers can continue to operate and make the discoveries that provide employment and royalties to Queensland."
Image: The new concession for coal explorers is applicable from 1 January 2016. Photo: courtesy of dan/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.