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Mitigating the Risk of a ‘Rise and Stall’ for the Australian Gold Industry

Australia

The Australian gold industry is at a crossroads.  Exploration companies are facing not only the technical challenges of seeking out gold deposits beneath cover – but also face great difficulty in accessing sufficient risk capital in order to continue a meaningful exploration effort.  Gold projects face stringent development hurdles at a time of volatile prices and escalating construction costs – with new Australian gold projects, for example, competing for skilled labour against both the giant LNG projects and the burgeoning iron ore sector. 

Gold miners face rising operating costs as mine grades are falling, coupled with the threat of higher royalties and taxes, and also heightened social responsibility and environmental requirements. Significant new Australian gold discoveries are few and far between with exploration efficiency measures revealing that discovery costs are rising.

This project will complete a supply analysis of the Australian gold industry, look to key cost drivers of production and their temporal evolution to develop a quantitative framework against which to benchmark and track changes from the industry’s likely growth trajectory.

The future growth of the Australian gold sector is clearly under threat – leaving the potential for a ‘Rise and Stall’ economic legacy unless key changes can be implemented.

This project will assess the likely impact of possible initiatives aimed at preventing the stalling of one of Australia’s key mining sectors – through both company strategy and mineral policy economic lenses.