PERTH (miningweekly.com) – New data collected by Geoscience Australia has shown dramatic increases in critical mineral resources in Australia, including tantalum, lithium and rare earths.
The data was collected from the mining industry in 2018, and also shows that Australia continues to be a global leader in mineral exploration and production.
Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia Keith Pitt said Australia’s mineral sector continues to play a significant role in the economic prosperity of all Australians.
“The boost in our critical minerals resources is the most significant change to the national minerals inventory. The data shows that our resources of tantalum rose by almost 80% and lithium by nearly 70% in the preceding 12 months.
“We also saw our resources of both platinum group elements and rare earth elements increase by 26% in that time.”
Pitt noted that these critical minerals were integral to the production of mobile phones, liquid crystal display screens, microchips, magnets, batteries and the new and emerging technologies that will drive the economy and innovation into the future.
The increase in resources is consistent with the data published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which has shown a continuing increase in expenditure on mineral exploration.