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Minerals exports: China Japan Korea

Australia’s mineral exports to China. Australia’s three highest earning exports to China in 2012-13 were minerals: The total value of all minerals exports to China in 2012-13 was A$62 billion. Minerals exports made up 73 per cent of total goods and services exports to China in 2012-13.

REPEAL OF THE CARBON TAX WILL BOOST WA MINING

The complete repeal of the carbon tax will provide early and important relief to West Australian businesses through lower energy costs and the removal of the shadow carbon price on diesel. An estimated 10,000 WA firms are paying an extra six cents per litre on diesel as a result of the carbon tax package, costing businesses in the state more than $200 million per year. Unless the carbon tax is removed by 1 July the diesel tax will increase further as the carbon price increases to $25.40 per tonne of CO2. These extra costs particularly disadvantage WA’s mining sector, which has no choice but to use diesel-powered shovels, excavators, trains and electricity generation to operate in remote locations in such a large state. Calls today from Professor Ross Garnaut, a key designer of the world’s biggest carbon tax, to halt the repeal of the carbon tax should be ignored. Defenders of the carbon tax, including Professor Garnaut should explain why WA businesses are contributing to a punitive tax that Australian carbon tax raised more revenue in its first six months than the entire European emissions trading scheme did in its first six years. And these defenders might also explain why the Australian carbon tax raised as much revenue in its first 6 weeks as the Californian carbon trading scheme is projected to generate in its first two years. The full and early repeal of the carbon tax will provide an important boost to confidence in the WA minerals sector which is operating in an environment with subdued global commodity prices.

2014 is set to be a big year for Australia’s industry uranium

I joined the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) in mid-October 2013; effectively as a successor to Michael Angwin who had headed the Australian Uranium Association since 2006 and successfully led it through to its merger with the MCA in late 2013.  Under Michael’s leadership, the uranium industry consolidated itself as an important component of Australia’s mining landscape. I take over the responsibility of building on Michael’s legacy at a time of great excitement for the sector. Here’s why 2014 is shaping up as a good year for our industry. The supply-demand balance for uranium moved into a new era as the Megatons to Megawatts program came to an end in December 2013. This program saw 20 000 Russian warheads down blended to nuclear power plant fuel and supplied half of America’s uranium needs for the last two decades. New mined uranium is now needed to replace this. Uranium prices have been in the doldrums through the second half of 2013 but many are predicting a correction this year. From prices under $US40/lb early in 2013, Deutsche forecasts price to be back over $US50/lb by year’s end based on demand from Japanese restarts and Chinese new reactors.

The official five year outlook - MCA Member Briefing Note

Each March, BREE releases five year forecasts for commodity production and exports. The 2014 analysis covers the period to 2018-19 and the transition from the investment to production phase of the millennium mining boom. Overall the report provides a positive assessment of the outlook for the minerals industry forecasting increased production and export volumes for most commodities and ‘substantial benefits’ to the Australian economy from higher export revenues.

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