4 October 2010 - Uranium industry seeks meeting with NT Chief Minister Henderson

The uranium industry is seeking a meeting with the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, Mr Paul Henderson, over the future of the Angela Pamela and other uranium projects in the Territory.

Last week the NT Chief Minister made a statement about the Angela Pamela project that appeared to pre-empt the usual mine assessment processes in the Territory.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Uranium Association, Mr Michael Angwin, said, “The established processes for assessing resource developments remain in place in the Territory, for all uranium projects. Decisions in accordance with those processes still have to be taken.“

As Mr Henderson pointed out, the Commonwealth is also involved in approving uranium projects in the Territory and we have full confidence the Commonwealth’s processes will be followed to allow decisions on the environmental and other merits of any uranium project, current and future.

“Uranium companies will continue to work in good faith and to adhere to the rules and regulations for resource projects in the Territory. Notwithstanding the views expressed by the NT Government last week, we expect the Territory Government to stick to its own processes in future,” Mr Angwin said.

“Many uranium projects in the Territory are at a very early stage and decisions on mine approvals are some way off. We want to make sure the Territory is on track before the Government has to make any decisions on uranium mines in accordance with its approval processes. So far, it has not had to do so.”

Last week, despite the fact that no mine had been proposed for Angela Pamela, and no official mine assessment process was underway, Mr Henderson said the NT Government would not support any Angela Pamela proposal, citing local environmental and tourism concerns.

Mr Angwin noted that Mr Henderson had correctly pointed out it was now up to the Commonwealth to decide if the Angela Pamela project should go ahead.

Mr Angwin said the industry would also seek a meeting with the Territory Opposition Country Liberal Party Leader, Mr Terry Mills.