Queensland is a poorer place for the continued failure of State and Federal Government to implement a gas reserve policy, Katter’s Australian Party Leader and Traeger MP Robbie Katter has said.

The Traeger MP, who is a long-term advocate for local gas reserves and regulated pricing of the precious commodity, said in a perfect world a national scheme would be in place but that the Queensland Government had also dropped the ball and presided over farcical policies that had sold out the State’s natural gas advantage.

“We are all paying right now for this most outrageous example of economic ignorance and the two major parties’ obsession with free market ideals at the expense of the Australian people,” Mr Katter said.

“I’d almost describe these policy failures as treasonous.”

As reported today by In Queensland, research conducted by the Australia Institute has highlighted Australian equity in its liquid natural gas (LNG industry) was only 4.3 per cent, and seven out of the 10 LNG export projects in Australia are at least 90 per cent foreign-owned. Four of the projects, including Curtis Island LNG are completely foreign-owned.[1]

The institute said the overall resources sector in Australia was largely foreign-owned and that in particular BHP was 94 per cent foreign-owned and the mining industry overall was 90 per cent foreign-owned.

Report author and senior research fellow at the Australia Institute, David Richardson, said households were now paying a fortune to compete with the gas export industry, which was run predominately by foreign-owned companies who pay little or no tax.

Mr Katter said it was scandalous that a gas reserve policy had not been established years ago at the state-level, as was the case in Western Australia where a 15 per cent reserve is in place.

“In Queensland, we were promised the world in 2009 when our gas industry was opened up by Labor, but since then gas royalty revenue has been abysmal in comparison to what was predicted,” he said.

“In 2020-21 the revenue to Queensland for its gas exports was only $298 million.

“The North West Mineral Province alone generates more $300 million a year in royalties and the coal industry around $6 billion so gas royalties mean very little to our State Budget’s bottom dollar.

“Couple this slap in the face with the fact that foreign corporations given the gas licences get to export our resources by the millions of tonnes and enjoy the profits, and then we Australians are made to buy the gas we need to run our factories and fuel our economies back from the international market; it’s lunacy.

“Foreign countries are benefitting from our gas at the literal expense of every Australia citizen.”

Mr Katter implored the Queensland and Commonwealth Governments to immediately move to establish a national gas reserve policy of at least 15 per cent.


Photo caption: Robbie Katter at the now closed gas-powered Mica Creek Power Station, located just outside Mount Isa.

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