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What is concerning mining and metals industry executives today?

Recent surveys conducted in the mining and metals industry sector indicate that climate change, price volatility and the risk of a global depression are the top concerns for executives.

The KMPG Mining Risk Forecast 2020/21 Report nominates climate change and price risks as top-of-mind for executives while a mid-year survey by White & Case found that the fear of a global recession was the most common concern amongst those surveyed. It’s worth noting that the KMPG survey was conducted before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the concerns raised have ongoing relevance both now and into the future.

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Implications of the Interim report on Commonwealth environmental protection laws

Professor Graeme Samuel recently released his Interim Report of the Independent Review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). The report is highly critical of the EPBC Act, reporting that it neither ensures effective environmental and biodiversity protections nor efficiently regulates business.


In the report, Professor Samuel makes several recommendations, some of which have already become priority areas for the government. These have significant implications for the energy and resources industry. 

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How COVID-19 could change mining for the better

The mining industry was deemed an essential service by the Government, which has enabled it to continue to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this hasn’t been without its challenges. New processes and procedures were required to address safety and social distancing and issues of supply and worker mobility have impacted how the industry operates. But with adversity comes opportunity and the mining industry has thrived and realised the potential for new improvements amidst the pandemic.

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How foreign investment changes may impact the mining and energy sector

In early June 2020, the government announced a review of the foreign investment rules, expanding them to apply to all foreign investors in anything deemed a ‘sensitive national security business’. The changes are scheduled to come into effect on 1 January 2021.

There are concerns that this will impact foreign investment in the mining and energy sectors, and in particular the critical minerals space. 

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Digital transformation in mining and energy

As the global shift to remote work gathers pace, it is more important than ever that the mining and energy sector embraces technology. But a digital transformation offers more than flexible working arrangements. It has the potential to drastically cut down on industrial accidents, optimise operational processes and slash costs.