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Media release: Hon Dan van Holst Pellekaan MP

Thursday 2 August 2018

The Marshall Liberal Government will today introduce legislation to modernise South Australia’s mining laws to encourage greater investment in the resources sector whilst providing stronger protection for agricultural land.

The Statute Amendment (Mineral Resources) Bill delivers the Marshall Government’s commitment to reform the State’s mining laws after reviewing feedback on the previous government’s Bill.

The Bill balances amendments to the Mining Act, the Opal Mining Act and the Mines and Works Inspection Act to give greater clarity, improve landowner rights, allow the resources sector to grow and increase South Australia’s economic competitiveness, particularly in our regions.

The revised Bill delivers the Marshall Government’s election commitment for the Office of the Small Business Commissioner to assist small primary producers if disputes arise. Primary producers will be able to seek advice and information from the Small Business Commissioner as part of an alternative dispute resolution process including developing a comprehensive Code of Conduct.

“These amendments are consistent with our election commitments”, Minister for Energy and Mining Dan van Holst Pellekaan said.

“The Bill addresses outdated red tape to encourage minerals exploration and production, whilst responding to the regional community’s justified desire for increased transparency and consultation.

“Importantly, our Government will also provide an advisory service for landholders to access if they have questions regarding exploration or mining.

“We want regional communities to support the sensible development of the State’s natural resources, consistent with the Government’s priorities of creating jobs and increasing exports.”

The legislative reforms once enacted by Parliament will:

  • substantially revise lease and licence structures to promote further exploration, progression to production, and job creation;
  • increase rights for landowners to object to operations on areas such as farming land;
  • improve legal access for landowners through simpler court and mediation processes;
  • remove unnecessary legal uncertainty around the operation of the Acts; and
  • introduce more stringent and modern environmental enforcement powers consistent with comparable legislation in South Australia and nationally.

The amendments follow one of the most comprehensive and extensive legislative reviews conducted by the South Australian Government and included a review of public submissions, and face-to-face discussions with various stakeholders.

Contact: Greg Charter 0434 79 1627