Certainty over mining leases for WA

Plans by the McGowan Government to introduce amending legislation to validate granted tenements will provide much needed certainty for mining projects in Western Australia, according to the Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia (CME).

The Government today announced that State Cabinet had approved the drafting and introduction of the Mining Legislation Amendment and Validation Bill 2017 and amendment to the Mining Act.

The amending legislation will validate granted tenements and ensure security of title for mining companies.

CME Chief Executive Reg Howard-Smith said the legislative changes were necessary following the High Court’s decision on the Forrest & Forrest v Wilson case in August, which found the process of granting mining lease applications was flawed.

“A majority of the High Court ruled a mineralisation report must be lodged at the same time as the application for a mining lease in order to be a valid application,” Mr Howard-Smith said.

“The amending legislation will validate those mining leases where the mineralisation report was not submitted concurrently with the mining application.

“Security of tenure is a fundamental principle of the Mining Act and we are grateful that the Government has moved quickly to address the issue to protect mining tenements.

“CME looks forward to its swift passage through parliament once drafted, and will be encouraging all parties to give bi-partisan support to the legislation.”

CME urged the Federal Government to progress any complementary amendments to the Native Title Act to ensure validity of mining leases.