Iron ore relief package backs jobs and industry

Royalty rebate scheme for junior miners
Date: Friday, 19 December 2014

Confidence boost as companies cut costs  

  • Royalty rebate scheme for junior miners
  • Confidence boost as companies cut costs

The State Government will make temporary assistance available to junior iron ore miners on a case by case basis as they restructure operations in challenging market conditions.

Premier and State Development Minister Colin Barnett and Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion said the assistance would be in the form of a 50 per cent rebate on eligible haematite iron ore royalties for up to 12 months, subject to the iron ore price remaining below an average of $A90 per tonne over the period.

“This is a responsible and carefully considered move and comes on the back of a 48 per cent fall in iron ore prices since January 1,” Mr Barnett said.

“The iron ore industry plays a hugely important role in the Western Australian economy, accounting for 56 per cent of the State’s exports and employing more than 61,000 people in 2013-14.”

At the conclusion of the assistance period, the rebates will be fully repayable over a period of up to two years, with repayments to be made in accordance with a schedule to be negotiated between the producer and the Minister for Mines and Petroleum.

“This is not a handout, this is a deferral and is a good outcome for WA,” Mr Marmion said.

“These junior producers extract the resources the big companies often won’t mine. They use local contractors and local businesses and overall this means additional jobs and royalties.”

Each request will be assessed by the Department of Mines and Petroleum on a case-by-case basis, through an extensive economic analysis overseen by an independent probity auditor.

The department will then make recommendations to the Minister regarding eligibility for assistance.

Fact File

  • The rebate will take effect from the December quarter 2014 royalty payment, with the first rebates available to eligible haematite miners in February 2015
  • Royalties for Regions (RfR) will fund 25% of the cost of the payments, with this amount to be re-appropriated to RfR following repayment of the rebates

DMP released guidelines for Financial Assistance Guidelines for applicants on the 29 December 2014.