15/12/2008 - 11:05

Fast-track exploration scheme: miners

15/12/2008 - 11:05

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Mining and market groups have called the federal government to fast track the implementation of its promised investment incentive scheme that is expected to encourage mineral exploration.

Mining and market groups have called the federal government to fast track the implementation of its promised investment incentive scheme that is expected to encourage mineral exploration.

The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies said today that it, along with other industry associations, have submitted a proposal to federal Minister for Resources Martin Ferguson for the implentation of the Flow-Through Share scheme.

The joint industry submission was prepared by the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies, Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, Australian Securities Exchange, Australian Shareholders Association, Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia, Minerals Council of Australia, Queensland Resources Council and
South Australian Chamber of Minerals and Energy.

AMEC chief executive Simon Bennison said the submission has now been publicly released to encourage discussion among Mr Ferguson's ministerial and parliamentary colleagues and wider industry stakeholders.

"We are pleased that Minister Ferguson used his key-note address at last week's AMEC Gala Dinner to re-assert his support for Labor's pre-election commitment to a Flow Through Shares (FTS) scheme," Mr Bennison said.

"However, Labor's Plan for a Stronger Resources Sector - Election 2007 promises only that FTS will be introduced in its first term of Government.

"Industry has come together on this submission to urge Minister Ferguson and his colleagues to fast-track the initiative and make FTS available to junior mining and exploration companies from 1 July 2009.

"The current global financial crisis has significantly damaged investor confidence and that in turn will put many major projects, especially in the exploration sector, in grave jeopardy in the near future.

"By allowing investors to claim unused tax credits from companies that do not yet have a taxable income, FTS will attract new and increased capital at the very heart of discovery and innovation.

"Restored investor confidence in the junior end of the resources sector will help fund critical exploration and other project development vital to Australia's long term economic future."

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