Ambassador warns that Queensland’s mining tax hike could prevent new investment in Japan


The Queensland Government’s huge coal loyalty tax could push Japanese investors away and undermine decades of partnership between the two countries, a Japanese ambassador to Australia warns.

Severe comments from Shingo Yamagami came after the government announced that it would be introduced by the Parashuk government. Three additional hierarchies of tax To the state mining royalties system.

Starting July 1, the state government will impose a 20% tax on every ton of coal sold for over A $ 175. 30 percent for prices above A $ 225 per ton. 40 percent for prices over $ 300 per ton.

Queensland’s previous coal royalties tax was a fixed 15% per ton, but it was still one of the highest taxes in the world. In Australia’s companions New South Wales and Western Australia, coal usage is less than 10%.

Shingo said on July 6 that the new loyalty scheme would hurt the profits of mining companies, including major Japanese companies that have been doing business in the state for decades.

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On November 5, 2021, bucket wheel dumping soil and sand were removed from another area of ​​the mine in Newcastle, Australia, the world’s largest coal export port. (SaeedKhan / AFP via Getty Images)

he Point out that The mining industry was “surprised” by the new tax and was not consulted about the change.

“No doubt this is a big shock to Japanese companies,” he told members at a meeting with the Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology at the University of Queensland (UQ).

“As a competitive investment destination, the future of a successful partnership between a Japanese company and Queensland can be at great risk.”

The ambassador added that the effects of the new coal tax “beyond the coal industry” as Japanese companies are also involved in hydrogen development, infrastructure and cutting-edge technology.

“Some Japanese companies are already wondering if Queensland will continue to be a safe and predictable investment destination that it has known for decades.”

The new loyalty scheme is estimated to add A $ 1.2 billion (US $ 820 million) to loyalty revenue, for a total of A $ 5.5 billion (US $ 3.75 billion).

Queensland Government Tax Office

The Queensland Government has adhered to this plan and has chosen to assemble this issue as an issue for locals to benefit at the expense of multinational corporations.

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At a press conference in Brisbane, Australia on March 15, 2020, Queensland Treasury Secretary Cameron Dick. (Jono Searle / Getty Images)

“They are his comments and he clearly takes care of Japanese companies. He welcomes those comments,” Resource Minister Scott Stewart told reporters on July 7. Told.

“But we look at those multinationals and see those super profits they earn and some of that money owned by all Queenslanders and make it our school. And we need to make sure to return to our community to serve our school. “

Treasury Secretary Cameron Dick said the country has a strong relationship with Japan.

“It’s fair to aim to return A $ 1.2 billion to the public in four years so that we can invest in Queensland as a whole, especially in Queensland hospitals where this money is spent.” He told reporters.

“We grew up together”

Japanese investment in Australian mining dates back to the 1960s.

The BHP-Mitsubishi Alliance alone is said to have created more than 10,000 jobs in Queensland and contributed to the construction of airports, ports, railroads and other mining infrastructure.

Meanwhile, Japan’s second largest oil refiner, IdemitsuSaid that it has created more than A $ 835 billion in value for Queensland over the last 12 years, created one in six jobs in the state and contributed to more than 15,000 companies.

Companies are also joining the Australian mining community in an uneconomical way with the development of Mitsubishi in 2021. Creating a contract We worked with UQ to educate the next generation of mining engineers.

“No other country in Australia’s history has been so involved in discovering, digging and transporting all stages of the resource supply chain,” Yamagami said. “I would say it this way. We grew up together.”

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On April 29, 2019, coal trains can be seen running parallel to the A4 highway in the Cloncurry and Blackwater regions of Queensland, Australia. (Lisa Maree Williams / Getty Images)

Currently, Japanese coal companies pay more than A $ 2 billion in taxes, and Mitsubishi and Mitsui are the eighth and ninth highest taxpayers in the country.

Mr Yamagami described Japanese companies as “good Australian citizens” and added that the two countries supported each other when they received economic coercion from China.

“For Japanese companies, Australia is a home, not a home,” said the Japanese ambassador. “They didn’t come here for short-term gains. They’ve been in it for a long time.”

However, Mitsui & Co., a major Japanese company headquartered in Queensland, has already begun. sale Major coal assets in the ongoing net zero push.

Queensland opposition meets with ambassador

“The betrayal can’t be undone,” said David Krisafuri, Queensland’s opposition leader, but “promises that this will never happen” under his government. rice field.

On July 8th, Mr. Krisafururi met with the ambassador to convey “long-term friendship and respect between Queensland and Japan.”

“It is important for him to tell Japan how important we are to that partnership.”

Nina Nguyen


Nina Nguyen is a Sydney-based reporter. She covers Australian news with a focus on social, cultural and identity issues. She is fluent in Vietnamese. Contact her at [email protected].