Territory Stories

Budget Paper No5 Northern Territory Economy 1998/99



Budget Paper No5 Northern Territory Economy 1998/99

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Tabled Paper 382


Tabled papers for 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT




Tabled by Michael Reed


Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory under Standing Order 240. Where copyright subsists with a third party it remains with the original owner and permission may be required to reuse the material.




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is estimated at $1 188 million, a fall of 10.5% on 1996-97. The short term forecast is that metallic and non-metallic minerals in the Territory will be characterised by declining value of production, declining new mine commissionings and decreasing exploration activity. The majority of this decline will be in greenfields exploration to justify new mining, rather than brownfield exploration which seeks to extend the life of existing mines. This decline can be related to falling commodity prices and increasing competition for exploration investment, both interstate and international. Land access remains an issue given the uncertainties associated with current Native Title and Aboriginal Land Rights legislation. The outlook for energy developments in the Territory is much healthier. Timor Sea developments include the Laminaria/ Corallina oilfield and the prospect that Timor Sea natural gas will be brought onshore in Darwin for liquefication. Other developments include the proposed development of the Jabiluka uranium mine. These developments will make major contributions to the Territory economy. MINERALS The Territorys most significant known metallic and non-metallic mineral resources are: bauxite - the third largest bauxite mine in Australia is at Gove; gold - major operating mines are located in the Pine Creek, Tennant Creek and Tanami Desert areas; manganese - Groote Eylandt is the worlds third largest producer of high grade manganese ore; zinc, lead and silver - including one of the worlds largest known ore bodies at McArthur River; deposits of copper, tantalite, tin, garnet sands and vermiculite; and diamond the Merlin diamond mine could start operations in 1998-99. 39 Mining 0 400 800 1 200 1 600 2 000 2 400 2 800 1992-93 1993-94 1994-95 1995-96 1996-97 1997-98e 1998-99f 1999-00f 2000-01f 2001-02f Energy Minerals $ million Figure 8.1 MINERAL AND ENERGY PRODUCTION AND PROCESSING Source: Department of Mines and Energy e: DME estimate f: DME forecast

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