16/03/2010 - 15:07

Gold miners unite to fight tax hike

16/03/2010 - 15:07

Bookmark

Save articles for future reference.

Western Australian gold miners have called on Premier Colin Barnett to first understand the gold sector's contribution to the state before singling out gold producers for increased tax.

Gold miners unite to fight tax hike

Western Australian gold miners have called on Premier Colin Barnett to first understand the gold sector's contribution to the state before singling out gold producers for increased taxes.

Silverlake Resources managing director, Les Davis, who is also spokesman for the recently formed Gold Royalties Response Group (GRRG), said the GRRG was formed by a large group of concerned gold miners in the state to convey to the Premier their collective opposition to any increase in taxation. 

"We've invited Premier Barnett to meet with us, and to first understand the gold sector's already considerable contribution to the State's treasury and to the socio-economic wellbeing of regional WA, before arbitrarily singling out gold producers for increased tax," Mr Davis said. 

The state government has alluded to significant hikes in royalites in the upcoming state budget slated for May.

"Importantly, government's proposed increased taxation on the state's gold miners will risk hundreds of jobs in this sector, the largest majority of which are in regional WA," Mr Davis said.

"It would seriously and adversely affect the economic viability of many WA gold miners and undermine investment in WA gold companies at a time when the junior end of the sector is experiencing its first revival in more than 20 years. 

"Depending on who we talk to, the planned increase in gold royalty taxation is anywhere from 80 per cent to 100 per cent. This would have far-reaching implications for smaller or marginal gold mines, and on the communities they operate in. 

"WA gold producers will contribute in the region of $190 million in gold royalties this year; that's over and above their regular company tax, payroll- and other taxes. 

"We're saying the gold sector is already paying more than its fair share.

To propose additional tax hikes for gold producers that are amongst the approximate 20 per cent of industry not covered under State Agreements will create an unlevel playing field.

We're calling on the Premier to clarify if the tax he is proposing will extend to the other 80 per cent of mining projects in WA that are covered under State Agreements; and not just targeting the smaller end producers."

 

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options