Qld backs critical minerals hunt

31st March 2023

By: Esmarie Iannucci

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Australasia


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PERTH ( – Critical minerals exploration has been the biggest winner in the latest round of funding under the Queensland government’s A$5-million exploration grants programme.

In the latest Collaborative Exploration Initiative round, 25 projects across the state have been provided with up to A$250 000 each to hunt for minerals, with nearly three-quarters of all successful projects focused on finding new copper deposits.

“To unlock the potential A$500-billion worth of critical mineral deposits in our North West Minerals Province, our explorers have to find them first,” said Resources Minister Scott Stewart.

“Our A$5-million programme will give our explorers the resources they need to take on financially risky projects that could lead to Queensland’s next big critical minerals discovery.

“The government is laying the foundation for a prosperous and enduring critical minerals sector through backing our explorers and injecting A$5-billion into CopperString 2032. And with the World Mining Congress coming up soon in Brisbane, we're eager to show the world that Queensland is the place to be when it comes to investing in critical minerals.”

Junior Red Metals said on Friday that it would use the funding to drill test the potential for a deep copper deposit on Wondoola Station, about 130 km north of the Ernest Henry mine near Cloncurry.

“When it comes to exploration, you've got to kiss a lot of cane toads before you find your prince," Red Metals MD Robert Rutherford said.

“These grants allow us to fund high-risk drilling which could hopefully lead to important new discoveries. Our surveying suggests that the Wondoola target shares geophysical similarities with the anomaly over Ernest Henry, only it is deeper under cover.

“Queensland is long overdue for a big discovery, and this programme supports drill tests on these expensive, deep covered plays to bring forward new discoveries. I am also a great believer in the sharing of data as it helps generate more new ideas and concepts speeding up the discovery process.”

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter


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