Banana Republic 101. Two former resources ministers from opposite sides of the aisle squealing simultaneously at new gas royalties. One at The Australian:
Former federal resources minister Martin Ferguson warned last night that the Queensland government’s surprise 25 per cent hike of gas production royalties in the state budget would jeopardise investment in mining and increase energy prices.
The one-time Labor Party and ACTU figure, who also opposed the Rudd government’s resource super-profits tax, which blindsided the mining industry in 2010 and sparked a backlash, said Queensland Treasurer and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad had made the same mistake by failing to consult over the “tax grab”.
“This is going to effectively increase the price of gas and probably raise serious questions in the minds of investors about sovereign risk,” Mr Ferguson told The Australian.
The other at the AFR:
The resources industry has erupted at the Queensland government’s decision to lift royalties on the gas industry.
“This will make Queensland gas less competitive and will risk jobs and future investment, and the creation of new jobs,” Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said on Tuesday.
He was speaking after the state budget was released, showing how the government would increase the petroleum royalty rate from 10 per cent to 12.5 per cent of wellhead value from the next financial year.
As two competing papers run by corporate apologists trot out the same old “sovereign risk” lie. There is no more investment coming, there is global glut of gas as far as the eye can see.
None of the gas firms pay any tax because they are still enjoying the preposterous uplift rates in their depreciation write-offs resulting from massively misallocated capital into LNG export overcapacity.
Meanwhile, the entire east coast economy is burdened with a $15-20bn gas and power price shock as the export cartel offsets loss-making exports of gas with an epic price gouge at home.
And the QLD Government is the “sovereign risk”?