• Media Release

Foster new mines in Victoria to grow regional jobs and revenue

Victoria must seize a golden opportunity to boost its economy and create new jobs by fast-tracking its strategy to unlock critical minerals and rare earth projects.

In its Pre-Budget submission, the MCA Victoria calls on the Victorian Government to bolster its commitment to mining, and ensure the State realises its potential to play an integral role in a once in a century critical minerals boom.

The world is facing a shortage of the critical minerals and rare earths required to meet the insatiable global demand for renewable energy components, electric vehicles and modern technology.

Victoria has the potential to supply mineral sands, rare earths, copper, antimony and gold, generating enormous economic benefits to regional areas, and creating additional revenue streams for the State. More mines mean more revenue.

MCA Victoria advocates modest investments to:

  • Build capacity in Resources Victoria to speed up approvals
  • Invest in geo-science and infrastructure to promote critical minerals projects
  • Reform Victoria’s unfair and poorly designed gold royalty regime
  • Build the next generation of the mining workforce through regional skills initiatives and earth sciences curriculum in secondary school

The Victorian Government has shown an unfortunate eagerness to see tax increases as a solution to paying down runaway debt. If it is serious about bolstering the Victorian economy, and increasing investment in mining and industry, tax should not be seen as a solution to addressing budget constraints. Such strategies will have perverse outcomes on the Victorian economy, increasing the strain on investment and job creation.

MCA Victoria also calls on the Victorian Government to get serious about the ‘Education State’ slogan and support the next generation of geoscientists, engineers, trades and entry level students into the growing mining industry.

Victoria lacks earth science education options at VCE level, and there are limited options for regional school leavers to study mining related courses despite the growing number of mining jobs across Australia as we supply the critical inputs to electrification and modern technology.

MCA Victoria welcomes government initiatives to reform the mining legislation, introduce grants for critical minerals, and a new project coordination role in Resources Victoria as advocated by MCA Victoria. However, more remains to be done.

Small investments in supporting mining will pay huge dividends to the Victorian community as regional economies diversify and create more opportunities to grow regional towns.