NT pays back to mining industry almost all its royalties


The Northern Territory taxpayers are providing massive assistance to the mining industry, a staggering $407 million over six years, which is enough to fund 799 doctors, according to The Australia Institute (TAI).
It says in 2013-14, the NT will repay almost 80 per cent of the value of the royalties it receives back to the mining industry in the form of $87.6 million dollars in assistance which is “similar to the amount spent on remote public housing and on middle-years education,” TAI says.
“State governments are usually associated with the provision of essential services like health and education so it will shock taxpayers to learn of the massive scale of government handouts to the minerals and fossil fuel industries.
“This report shows that Australian taxpayers have been misled about the costs and benefits of this industry, which we can now see are grossly disproportionate.
“It’s stunning to think this is the first time that the assistance provided to the mining industry by state governments has been quantified, however [we are]  not surprised governments have kept it quiet. Northern Territory taxpayers will be shocked at the massive scale of assistance to these industries.
“These subsidies demonstrate that the economic argument for these industries is fundamentally flawed – Australian taxpayers are funding mining at the expense of crucial public services like education, health and police,” says TAI.
“Fossil fuel subsidies are a major barrier to clean energy development in Australia. State governments are locking us into old dirty fuels that destroy the environment for diminishing economic gain, instead of developing renewable energy and benefiting from the resulting jobs and economic growth.
“Supporters of Australia’s minerals and fossil fuel industries argue that they provide value in royalties, jobs and economic prosperity but our research exposes these claims as fundamentally flawed.”
[From a The Australia Institute media release.]


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