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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 1008 asked in the Legislative Council on 18 October 2018 by Hon Robin Scott

Minister responding: Hon W.J. Johnston
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 18 October 2018

GOLD — GREENFIELD EXPLORATION

1008. Hon ROBIN SCOTT to the minister representing the Minister for Mines and Petroleum:

(1) Will the minister confirm the report on Geoscience Australia's website that in 2014 Western Australia's economic demonstrated resources of gold decreased by 358 tonnes, a decline of 9.22 per cent?

(2) Has the minister any current information proving that this decline has been reversed since 2014?

(3) Can the minister confirm the report in the Kalgoorlie Miner on 18 October that Dr Jon Hronsky of Western Mining Services says a new way forward is needed to arrest a long-term decline in quality greenfield exploration?

(4) Has the government a plan to encourage greenfield exploration by reducing compliance costs or by any other means?

The PRESIDENT: I think that question is actually directed to the Minister for Regional Development.

Hon ALANNAH MacTIERNAN replied:

I thank the member for notice of the question. The following information has been provided to me by the Minister for Mines and Petroleum.

(1) Yes.

(2) I refer the member to Geoscience Australia's ''Australian Resource Reviews: Gold 2016'', which reported that in 2015 Australia's economic demonstrated resources increased by 456 tonnes, with the largest growth occurring in Western Australia, up 330 tonnes.

(3) Yes.

(4) The McGowan government has secured the exploration incentive scheme that supports the exploration and development of the mining sector across WA, with gold explorers a major beneficiary. The Geoscience data from the EIS is freely accessible, benefiting all Western Australian prospectors and exploration companies, allowing them to continue to discover Western Australia's gold reserves. The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety is also in the process of reviewing compliance costs for the exploration sector.