High interest for WA exploration scheme

05/06/2009 - 15:04

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The state government's new exploration incentive scheme has attracted nearly 170 applications with the bulk looking for financial support in their exploration efforts for gold.

High interest for WA exploration scheme

The state government's new exploration incentive scheme has attracted nearly 170 applications with the bulk looking for financial support in their exploration efforts for gold.

 

The announcement is below:

 

The State Government's new co-funded Industry Drilling Program has attracted 168 applications for drilling projects in 2009-10.

Mines and Petroleum Minister Norman Moore said today that applications for the funding indicated more than 800,000m of exploration drilling would occur in Western Australia's under-explored areas.

The program - part of the $80million Exploration Incentive Scheme (EIS) funded through the Royalties for Region Program over the next five years - provides up to 50 per cent funding per project, with a cap of $150,000, for successful applicants.

Mr Moore said the positive response to the program was an encouraging indicator of future prosperity in the State's resources sector.

"The high number of applications to explore for minerals throughout our under-explored areas clearly recognises the enormous potential for new discoveries across WA," he said.

"The most popular target mineral was gold with 73 applications, followed by 37 applications for copper and 30 applications for uranium exploration.

"The Yilgarn region, which covers the Wheatbelt and Goldfields area, proved the most popular place to explore, with about 20 per cent of the applications related to that area."

Applications were also received for projects in the Albany Fraser Orogen, Eucla Basin, Arunta Orogen, Perth Basin, Canning Basin and Hamersley Basin, among other areas.

Applications targeted commodities such as nickel (18), iron ore (12), heavy mineral sands (seven), geothermal energy (three), coal (two), with gas, diamonds and coal seam methane each attracting one application.

A panel of industry experts is assessing all the applications and is particularly interested in proposals which have potential to advance exploration activity in under-explored areas and are based on leading, innovative science.

"Applications will be ranked, with $3million of EIS allocated funding in 2009-10, distributed to the highest ranked projects," the Minister said.

"A total of $20.5million will fund the Industry Drilling Program in the next four years."

 

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