The Palaszczuk Government could expect almost an extra AUS$1 billion over above their record projections in the Budget last year from coal royalties paid by the mining industry. The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) has forecast that royalties on both thermal and metallurgical coals were due to set a new record of AUS$4.46 billion this financial year (2018-19) – or the equivalent of AUS$12 million/day.
“At the time of the State Budget last year, the Government forecast coal royalties to deliver AUS$3.52 billion. Compare that to five years ago (in 2013-14) when coal royalties paid to the then Newman Government were less than AUS$2 billion,” QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said.
“Demand for Queensland coal is very strong. Overseas demand means we are expected to once again sell more than 200 million t of coal. Prices are strong, particularly for metallurgical coal with indicator prices above AUS$200/t.”
Macfarlane said to put the coal royalties into context, the AUS$4.46 billion pays for almost half of the Education budget for 2018-19 (AUS$9.37 billion) or the equivalent of the budgets of 14 government departments and agencies, including the Departments of Premier and Cabinet, Environment and Science and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships as well as the Parliament, the Electoral Commission and the Queensland Audit Office.
Macfarlane said coal’s contribution to Queensland is worth more than the record royalties windfall to the State Government. Coal directly provides AUS$43.4 billion to the State’s economy representing 13% of Queensland’s gross regional product and supports more than 215 000 full-time equivalent jobs or 9% of the State’s workforce.