The Victorian Government is in the process of making changes to the state’s resources guidelines, aiming to set a higher standard for mineral explorers and miners entrusted with access to its precious mineral resources.
The Victorian Government wants to place a stronger focus on minerals explorers and miners who can prove they are reputable, community-focused and set up appropriately for the duration of projects, including the full rehabilitation of sites around the state.
Now employing 120,000 people across Victoria, the state’s minerals exploration and mining sectors are growing steadily, and the government believes that now, more than ever, is the time to raise the bar on who can access state-owned minerals.
The new assessment guidelines would ensure that a resources company’s track record, and the records of its directors and executives, are examined when considering licensing decisions.
The new guidelines also aim to provide greater assurance to individuals and communities that public safety, infrastructure and the environment will be better protected when minerals explorers and miners work on both private and public land.
The changes also aim to benefit the sector by providing upfront and consistent information about how mining licence applications are assessed, making it easier for people with a good track record to apply.
Minister for Resources, Jaclyn Symes said they are raising the bar to make sure that Victoria’s mining sector employs the most qualified and reputable people to access its mineral resources with a strong focus on supporting the communities they work in.
“We’re attracting people to our minerals and mining industry with a strong track record of integrity and collaborating with the community, to ensure we can keep supporting local economies and creating Victorian jobs,” she said.
State Manager for the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies, Les Cox also commented that “setting clear and consistent guidelines upfront to assess whether a person is fit and proper to hold a licence helps to protect good operators and build community confidence”.
The new guidelines have already been part of the process for assessing potential licensees for the Stavely Ground Release in western Victoria and will also be front and centre for the Lockington Ground Release in northern Victoria later in 2019.