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Foreign investment in coal



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TREASURER

EMBARGO

NO. 100

STATEMENT BY THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER AND TREASURER

FOREIGN INVESTMENT IN COAL

The Deputy Prime Minister and the Treasurer said today that the

Government had been considering a number of proposals involving

foreign investment in the Australian coal industry.

The Ministers said that, acting on the recommendation of the

Foreign Investment Review Board, proposals by Shell to acquire

interests in Thiess Holdings Ltd and in Austen and Butta Ltd and

for MIM Holdings to acquire an associate company of Griffin Coal

Mining, had been approved as being of benefit to the development

of the industry and therefore not inconsistent with the

Government's foreign investment policy.

The Ministers went on to say that they were aware of a number‘ of

proposals by foreign companies to acquire interests in the Hail

Creek coking coal project.

They said that these proposals would need to be examined by the

Foreign Investment Review Board concurrently, to determine

whether the overall structure of the project would meet the

Government's guidelines in respect of foreign participation in

new mineral projects.

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In view of this, the Ministers said that an Interim Order in

terms of the Foreign Takeovers Act, had been placed on a

proposal by Esso to acquire a 25$ interest in the Hail Creek

project. · <

The Ministers affirmed that development of the Hail Creek

project would be subject to the Government’s guidelines on

foreign participation in new mineral projects, as set out in the

Treasurer's statement of 1 Apr 1976.

They said they had asked the Foreign Investment Review Board to

give priority to examination of any firm co-ordinated proposal

for the development of the Hail Creek project.

CANBERRA ACT

9 Sep 1977