Nationals Leader Dugald Saunders says an increase in coal royalty rates, announced by the NSW Government, is just another example of a Labor budget on the run.
The government has announced that from July next year, royalty rates – the taxes paid in exchange for the right to extract coal and other resources – will rise by 2.6 per cent.
The tax rate for open cut mines will increase to 10.8 per cent, the rate for underground mines will increase to 9.8 per cent, and the rate for deep underground mines will rise to 8.8 per cent.
The move is forecast to generate more than $2.7 billion.
NSW Minerals Council Stephen Galilee said, “It will be a significant additional impost on the NSW coal sector at a time when coal prices have been falling and our operating costs have been rising.”
Mr Saunders said the Treasurer is attempting to fill holes is his upcoming budget with knee-jerk measures that don’t need to be done now, and which potentially will harm one of our most valuable export sectors in the long run.
“The reality is this move will mean a 30 per cent impact on coal producers across the state, which would be difficult for any business. It raises concerns about the future of a sector that provides three quarters of the state’s power on a daily basis and employs thousands of people in regional areas.”
Mr Saunders said the NSW Government needs to ensure these jobs won’t be affected by this drastic change and that there is no long-term impact on the industry.
Nationals Member for Upper Hunter, Dave Layzell, said Labor’s outrageously lazy move is fleecing the heavy lifters.
“Unless I am mistaken, the change is simply about grabbing low hanging fruit to beef-up consolidated revenue.”