JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The green shoots that are sprouting in the resources sector should signal a green light for governments to weed out the red tape and grow investment opportunities, says Queensland Resources Council CEO Michael Roche.
Speaking at the 2016 Mining Convention in Brisbane, on Thursday, he said that investors were keen to capitalise on existing opportunities ahead of a recovery.
“There are plenty of people out there putting up their hands to get back into the market because they can see the upturn coming,” Roche said.
“But we need to give them all the reasons possible to choose to invest in Australia, and in particular, Queensland.”
Roche said prices across a range of commodities, including thermal and coking coal, had shot up, with those two commodities seeing increases of 36% and 44% respectively.
“Ironically some analysts are now saying that coal is one of the hottest commodities of 2016, but these were probably the same analysts who were saying coal was in terminal decline this time last year,” Roche said.
“We are cautious about claiming the coal price rally is indeed a recovery from the severe downturn of recent years but we are nevertheless encouraged to see hard coking coal selling for well over $100/t and thermal coal nudging $70/t.
“We have also seen rises across various metals and liquefied natural gas, but for industry to fully take advantage of the upturn, we need our new projects to get out of the courts and into construction.”
He added that some policies in Queensland had caused much angst this year, accusing the Queensland government of taking two steps backward and one step forward.
“‘We do have though a Premier, Treasurer and Minister for State Development, Natural Resources and Mines that get it. But they need more support, both in their own party and in the Parliament.”
“We also should never forget that the spoils of the resources sector are vital to modern day life, a fact that green activists should remember before they attack through the courts or across media platforms that are all made using resources.
“I have no doubt, there will be a rebound in our resources sector and the question for us all is whether Queensland will be ready to take advantage, or consign itself to playing catch-up,” Roche said.