PERTH (miningweekly.com) - The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (Appea) has urged the federal government to extend the Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive (JMEI) to the oil and gas sector.
In its pre-Budget submission, Appea also recommended four other reforms, including making salary costs immediately deductible on infrastructure projects, introducing specific investment allowances, providing tax asset rollover relief and ensuring tax laws keep pace with commercial practices.
Appea CEO Andrew McConville said with the combined impacts of Covid-19 and the most challenging market conditions faced by Australia in a generation, having the right fiscal and investment policy settings will help to stabilise Australia’s oil and gas industry and as a result, the wider economy.
“The fiscal reforms needed to underpin economic recovery – as well as having an open and competitive gas market – will ensure Australia can create a positive, competitive and stable investment and operating environment that will help support employment and growth as we emerge from Covid-19,” McConville said.
He added that a decade of regulatory instability and market interventions, coupled with being a high-cost investment destination, had reduced investment confidence in many industries, including oil and gas.
“Australia competes for scarce global capital and to do this we must have a best-in-class fiscal regime, objective-based regulation, promote exploration and innovation in resources development and allow markets to work without intervention.
“Industry sees the Budget as an important opportunity for the government to pursue reforms to improve fiscal and regulatory stability and provide a market environment that is attractive for investment.
“Australia can secure the next billion-dollar wave of industry developments and help power the nation’s economic recovery, with the right settings in place. Our plan can help government deliver that. This investment can help stimulate local economies, create employment and generate long-term revenue.
“As the economy recovers from Covid-19, the industry stands ready to provide energy security for homes and manufacturing businesses, generate jobs through exploration and new operations, provide taxation revenue to build schools, roads and hospitals and strengthen our economy.”