Recent Developments in Australian Mining Sector – National

The Australian mining sector has reportedly had mixed performance. On the negative side, exploration expenditure fell 6.8% to AU$655 million in the June 2020 quarter and revenue has fallen by an estimated 14.1% over 2019-20. The largest decrease by minerals sought during exploration activities came from expenditure on selected base metals. Additionally, Australia's aluminium is being priced out of the global market due to high energy costs as global demand has slumped causing aluminium producers to consider the viability of their facilities.

This is contrasted with strong iron ore prices and record gold prices. The iron ore industry is the largest segment of the Australian mining sector and the high prices and growth in output has allowed the generation of an estimated AU$103 billion in iron ore export revenue in 2019-20, according to the Australian Office of the Chief Economist. Major iron ore players, such as Fortescue Metals and BHP, have ramped up production and continued to invest in new production capacity.

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