Federal budget outlines multi-billion-dollar investment in Australia’s clean energy future

As outlined in last night’s 2024-25 budget announcement, the federal government has committed almost $20 billion to support critical minerals exploration and processing in Australia.

The Western Australian government says the funding will deliver data, maps, and other tools for use by the resources sector that will pave the way for new discoveries, help drive the economy, and commit to the full mapping of Australia over the next generation. 

Western Australian Premier Roger Cook says the commitments represent a vote of confidence in the future of Western Australia’s resources sector. 

“This news will come as welcome relief — particularly for Western Australia nickel and lithium miners facing extremely challenging market conditions,” he says. 

The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) has commended the federal government for announcing a critical minerals production tax incentive of $7 billion. 

Over a 10-year period, $7 billion will be used for 31 critical minerals on the official critical minerals list, to provide assistance and incentives to the industry. 

AMEC Chief Executive Warren Pearce says this commitment shows how serious the government is about the energy transition and decarbonising the nation’s economy. 

“It will generate new projects in new industries that will drive further economic growth, thousands of new jobs, and continue to deliver our high standard of living,” he says. 

The incentive will provide a 10% tax credit to companies conducting downstream processing that value-adds to raw minerals. 

AMEC says a production tax incentive ensures that the tax office only returns cash to a company if and when it enters into production. 

The $7 billion commitment is considered the cornerstone of the federal government’s $22.7 billion Future Made in Australia strategy, under which the budget has set aside a $1.7 billion investment to support innovation, commercialisation, pilot, and early-stage development within priority sectors.

These priority sectors include renewable hydrogen, green metals, low carbon liquid fuels, and clean energy technology manufacturing. 

The Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia (CMEWA) CEO Rebecca Tomkinson says these investments recognise the central role the resources sector plays in the economy and future. 

“It’s pleasing to see the federal government adopt CME recommendations such as a production tax incentive for critical minerals, funding for common-user infrastructure and support to bridge the commerciality gap for renewable hydrogen singled out in the budget under the Future Made in Australia package,” she says. 

“Reforms to streamline Australia’s foreign investment review processes for low-risk investors is an important complementary measure.”

Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au   

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Written By Aaliyah Rogan
Relocated from the East Coast in New Zealand to Queensland Australia, Aaliyah is a fervent journalist who has a passion for storytelling. When Aaliyah isn’t writing stories, she is either spending time with friends and family or down at the beach.