Australia continues to rank highly for mineral exploration

03 March 2017

Australia continues to rank as the most attractive region in the world for mineral exploration investment, when both policy and mineral potential are considered, according to the 2016 Annual Survey of Mining Companies report released this week by the Canadian based Fraser Institute.

According to the report, Western Australia's Investment Attractiveness Index score places it as the third most attractive jurisdiction in the world for investment; followed by Queensland which is ranked tenth. Western Australia has been ranked number one in the world with regards to Best Practice Mineral Potential, followed again by Queensland ranked fourth.

Undertaken annually since 1997, the Fraser Institute's report rates jurisdictions according to their geological potential and policy conditions. Based on the responses of 350 mining and exploration companies, the survey compares 104 jurisdictions from around the world.

Discovering, developing and exporting Australia's mineral commodities is a very significant part of our economy, providing jobs and national income. Australia is an established and stable destination for global mineral exploration investment. With a long history of successful mining projects, Australia has traditionally attracted a large percentage of global exploration investment.

In 2015-16 the energy and minerals sectors accounted for almost two-thirds of Australia's exports, contributed six per cent of Australia's Gross Domestic Product, and provided employment for about 216 000 people. In 2015-16, Australia earned $157 billion from mineral and energy exports, increasing to an anticipated $204 billion in 2016-17, and expected to rise to $208 billion in 2020-21. However, Australia's share of global mineral exploration expenditure has fallen from 21 per cent in the 1990s to 12 per cent in 2015.

Investing in mineral exploration efforts for Australia

Attracting further investment through promoting Australia's resource potential is a key priority for the Australian Government. In 2016, the Australian Government announced the Exploring for the Future programme, which will provide a broad, regional understanding of resource potential across the entire northern Australia region.

Work is underway for the four-year, $100.5 million programme to investigate the potential of mineral, energy and groundwater resources in northern Australia and parts of South Australia, both regions where the resource potential is relatively poorly known. The programme aims to de-risk and renew the appetite for investment in mineral exploration, and help identify major new gas and minerals resources.

This week, representatives from Australia Minerals, are showcasing Australia as an exploration destination of choice at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) Convention, a leading mineral exploration and investment conference.

Australia Minerals, a joint venture between federal, state and Northern Territory government geoscience agencies, is working together to offer ground-breaking information, unrivalled expertise and a record of innovation that supports mineral explorers to realise investment opportunities.

Further information