Mid election backflip likely to reshape Galilee development but not stop it
Wednesday 29 November 2017
The likely re-election of Labor in Queensland may not stop Adani’s Galilee mine ambitions altogether, but it could severely limit the prospects of other Galilee miners in the future.
According to Federal Resources Minister Matt Canavan, the Palaszczuk Labor Government has been publicly and privately pushing for a $1 billion loan through the Northern Australian Infrastructure Fund (NAIF) for the last eighteen months.
However, he told Shift Miner the Premier’s unilateral decision to veto the loan application during the election takes that option off the table.
“If the Palaszczuk Government is elected I will be writing to the Premier or the relevant Minister asking for urgent clarification as to whether they intend to veto any NAIF loan to the Adani project,” he said.
“A NAIF loan can’t proceed without Queensland Government support.
“That’s written in the agreement between the Queensland Government and the Australian Government.”
Some of the benefits of a $1 billion loan through the NAIF is that it is conditional on the rail line being open to other mining and agricultural users, and also that Adani would have to repay all the money in full with interest.
If you remove the loan option, the only other possibility is that Adani finds investors to help fund it all themselves.
The tradeoff however for Australia under that scenario is that Adani has 100% control over who else uses the rail line and at what price.
Given the width of the State Development Corridor established to link the Galilee Basin with Abbot Point Coal terminal, another rail line isn't a viable option.
That means anyone else wanting to mine in the Galilee would have to live with the risk of being dependent on a single privately owned rail monopoly.