More than half of Queenslanders are in favour of reducing the coal royalty tax if it means big miners like BHP will continue to invest in Queensland.
A recent, independent poll conducted by Freshwater Strategy on behalf of The Australian Financial Review, found that support for reducing coal royalty rates increased after hearing about the increase in revenue flowing to state coffers, and statements from BHP CEO Mike Henry pointing out that 'Queensland is the highest taxing regime for mining in the world’. BHP, amongst others, has paused new investment in the state, and is actively looking to invest in South Australia or Western Australia.
‘Queensland relies on the resources industry and there is a concern that investment is moving away from Queensland,’ said Ian MacFarlane, CEO of the Queensland ResourcesCouncil.
‘People are concerned that companies will not be there with new mines to replace the ones that reach end of life. And the first thing that will be hurt are regional jobs in the coal fields.’
Further, 38% of people believed the mining, gas, and agricultural industries were responsible for the record $12b surplus in Queensland’s state budget ($15b which was reaped from the coal royalties bonanza started in July last year).
The Queensland Government’s approach means this short term gain will cause long term economic pain.
The Government must reconsider to Keep Queensland Competitive.
The full article, written by Mark Ludlow for the Australian Financial Review, can be read here: