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Fair Share Plan

We’ve suffered a lost decade of mining revenue. Between 2010 and 2020 mining corporations exported over $480 billion of coal, minerals and LNG and only paid 7% on that in royalties. Rather than going toward schools, hospitals and public infrastructure, billions of dollars went into the pockets of multinational mining corporations. The Greens believe there should be more money for schools and hospitals and less for mining billionaires. 

In the five financial years between  2013 and 2018 ten of the biggest mining corporations operating in Queensland made over $128 billion in revenue and paid less than 1% in tax, with 8 of those corporations paying zero dollars. 

These mining resources belong to every Queenslander, but right now the vast majority of that wealth is going into the hands of mining billionaires. We need a little more for us, and a little less for mining billionaires. 

The Queensland Greens will:

  • Raise an extra $14 billion a year off our coal, LNG and minerals 
  • Raise the coal and petroleum (including LNG) royalty rate to a flat 35%
  • Raise the royalty rates for base and precious metals, and Bauxite to a flat 20% 
    • Including: Cobalt, copper, gold, lead, nikel, silver and zinc 
  • Abolish the well-head petroleum royalty pricing method for LNG and instead charge the royalty to a rate based off the ACCC’s netback LNG price 
  • Abolish all government subsidies to the coal and LNG industry and end royalty deals like the one currently being negotiated with Adani 

If we had fair royalty rates over the last four years the Queensland Government would have at least an extra $55 billion for hospitals, schools and public infrastructure. The Government could invest in the new industries and manufacturing we need to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in Queensland. But instead, over the last ten years they’ve allowed mining corporations to export over $480 billion worth of coal, LNG and minerals while putting only 7% of that towards the things we all need for a good life. 

How much will you raise? 

The Greens would raise an extra $55 billion over the next four years from our coal, LNG and minerals. We need to phase out thermal coal by 2030 so the Greens’ costings assume thermal coal production will halve by 2025. We’ve also assumed that there will be a 14 million tonnes reduction in coking coal (coal used to make steel) as we begin the longer term transition to zero carbon production, including green steel. Meanwhile the Greens believe there should be no new LNG or coal mines in Queensland, so we’ve assumed no increase in LNG production over this period. Finally, we’ve used the latest Queensland Treasury and ACCC data on coal and LNG prices. 

($millions)

2020/21

2021/22

2023/24

2024/25

Total

Queensland Government Royalty Revenue

$4,378

$4,519

$4,616

$4,616

$18,129

Greens Fair Share Plan

$18,881

$18,733

$18,176

$17,359

$73,150

Extra revenue generated by Greens plan

$14,503

$14,214

$13,560

$12,743

$55,021

 

Changes to royalty rates

Government Rate

Greens' Fair Share Plan

Coal

Average price per tonne for period


Up to and including $100 - 7% of value

Over $100 and up to and including $150

First $100 - 7% of value

Balance - 12.5% of value

More than $150

First $100 - 7% of value

Next $50 - 12.5% of value

Balance - 15% of value

35% of the value of a tonne of coal

Petroleum

12.5% of the wellhead value

35% of the value of the ACCC netback price

Base and Precious Metals

2.5% - 5% of the value

20% of the value of a tonne of metals

Bauxite

10% of the value

20% of the value of a tonne of Bauxite

Fair royalty rates

Mining corporations are some of the worst offenders when it comes to tax dodging and exploiting tax loopholes. In the five financial years between 2014 and 2018 ten of the biggest mining corporations operating in Queensland made over $128 billion in revenue and paid less than 1% in tax, with 8 of those corporations paying zero dollars. Royalties are the simplest and most effective way of ensuring every Queenslander receives their fair share from resources that should belong to every single one of us. Queensland has had a lost decade of missed mining revenue. In the last ten years Queensland mining corporations have exported $480 billion worth of coal, LNG and minerals but Queenslanders have received less than 7% of that in royalties. 35% on coal and LNG will ensure Queenslanders make up for that lost decade and finally receive their fair share for our resources. The Greens plan will raise $55 billion over four years that will go into health, education, and jobs building public infrastructure and new manufacturing industries.

Fair price for LNG

Right now LNG corporations like Santos are ripping off Queenslanders using dodgy assumptions to avoid billions of dollars in royalties, and the Queensland Government is letting them get away with it. LNG companies exported over $15 billion of LNG last year, but only paid 3.9% of that on royalties. Corporations like Santos or Shell use a loophole where they claim their LNG is worth substantially less than they actually sell it for. 

The Greens would charge royalties to a fair price for LNG based on a price calculated by the ACCC, called the netback price. The LNG netback price is based on the actual market price of LNG and the cost of shipping and storage. The ACCC described the netback price as

a measure of an export parity price that a LNG supplier can expect to receive for exporting its LNG. It is calculated by taking the price that could be received for LNG and subtracting or ‘netting back’ the costs incurred by the supplier to convert the LNG to LNG and ship it to the destination port.

Rather than letting greedy LNG corporations decide what price should determine how much in royalties they pay, it’s time to set the price using a fair, independent measure. 

Flat coal royalty rate 

Right now coal royalties are levied at a graduated rate depending on the price of coal. An Australia Institute report found that this effectively provides a subsidy to coal corporations mining cheap, dirty thermal coal. The Greens will establish a flat rate for coal. Over the medium term this will accelerate the phase out of thermal coal mining while coking coal mining will remain viable in the medium term.

No subsidies for coal and LNG corporations

It’s pretty simple: coal and LNG corporations should pay the same costs for transport, power and infrastructure that the average citizen or business would pay. But right now coal and LNG corporations are the beneficiaries of millions of dollars in Queensland Government subsidies. 

In a comprehensive report, the Australia Institute found that between 2008/9 and 2013/14 the Queensland Government spent $9.5 billion on subsidies for the mining industry, largely eroding any money raised via royalties. Since this report there has been no definitive or in-depth study into subsidies provided by the Queensland Government to the mining industry. Without significant work and scrutiny it is difficult to determine exactly how much in subsidies are provided to the mining industry. However, many forms of subsidy remain, including transport subsidies, cheap electricity and more.

For instance, many coal company employers are deemed exempt from paying payroll tax. In 2015/16 this cost Queensland a quarter of a billion dollars. Coal companies are also given concessional rates on freight transport. The Australia Institute estimates this costs the state around $300m a year.

1. https://www.accc.gov.au/regulated-infrastructure/energy/gas-inquiry-201…
https://www.tai.org.au/sites/default/files/P749%20Free%20coal%20contest…
https://www.tai.org.au/node/476