Miners got A$4.5 billion from taxpayers last year: Australian Institute

australian institute mining subsidized

Mines and Money awards dinner in London.

Counting up all the services and tax breaks Australian miners receive, the left-leaning Australian Institute calculates that the industry is being "propped up" on A$4.5 billion from the federal government over the past year.

In its report Pouring More Fuel on the Fire that was released today, the institute says the subsidies were 12.5% higher in 2012 compared to the year before.

The institute lists the largest subsidies:

  • $2.35 billion in fuel subsidies (increased $458 million)
  • $495 million in tax write-offs for capital works (increased $127.5 million)
  • $550 million in deductions for exploration and prospecting (increased $220 million)

The subsidies are under esimated, says the report's authors since states subsidies were excluded, as well as ". . . subsidies that go to a number of industries but cannot be broken down to show only those benefits that accrue to the mining industry."

With miners receiving pre-tax profits last year of $84 billion, the institute says the subsidies are unwarranted.

"To put this in context, that represents six per cent of GDP, or, for every $100 of income earned in Australia, $6 went to the owners of mining companies," writes the report's authors.

Profits spell investment. The author's chart the amount of money flowing into major mining projects are worth A$268 billion.

australian institute major mining projects

Using figures from the Bureau of Resource and Energy Economics (BREE), the Australian Institute estimates that energy and mineral projects worth $268 billion have been started or committed to.

Creative Commons image of Mines & Money London 2011