Under the combined support and sponsorship of six government agencies (both State and Federal), three research organisations and three industry groups, including AIG, a landmark report has been published by MinEx Consulting looking at the forty-year outlook for the Australian gold industry. It forecasts the likely number of mines, production, revenues and employment out to 2057 for this vital sector of Australia’s economy.
In the past, most industry studies rarely look beyond ten years. The report’s author, Richard Schodde, says that “there are two good reasons for this; Firstly; the future is highly uncertain – and any single-line forecast is almost certain to be wrong. Secondly; most of these studies only looked at existing mines and possible new projects. This is fine for short- to medium-term forecasts but it ignores the important contribution of new discoveries for mine production in the longer-term.”
It goes without saying that every mine has a finite life (and will eventually close down); it also equally true that all mines were once a gleam in the eye of a geologist (i.e. it took someone to find them). Leaving out the discovery story results in an incomplete view on the long-term future of the mining industry.
As discussed below, nurturing exploration success is critical for ensuring the long-term sustainability of the mining industry.
MinEx Consulting’s approach to the task was via the following eight-step process:
The report will be officially released next Monday, 16th October, 2017.