Best Exploration Figures In Over Decade

NT Government

The Territory Labor Government is set to become a leader in the world’s supply of critical minerals.

New data shows mineral exploration expenditure in the NT for 2023 shot up to $228.1 million – up 14 per cent on 2022’s figure of $199.9 million.

$228.1 million is the largest exploration figures the NT has seen in over a decade and marginally short of the highest expenditure ever recorded in the NT, which was $228.4 million in 2011.

The 14% rise from 2022 exploration expenditure to 2023s is also well above the national average increase of 5%.

In addition, for the December 2023 quarter, mineral exploration expenditure in the NT was $63.1 million, up 10% on the same quarter in 2022.

The demand for critical minerals worldwide continues to drive this growth in exploration, with a large proportion of the expenditure increase attributed to lithium, rare earth elements and other critical minerals.

This comes as the Federal Labor Government committed $840 million to help deliver Australia’s first combined rare earths mine and refinery in the Northern Territory.

The Australian first refinery will create over 300 jobs adding to the 4,400 people already directly employed in the sector which produced $4.86 billion to the NT economy in 2022-23.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Mining, Mark Monaghan:

“Mineral exploration expenditure in the Territory continues to lead the country- and Territorians are the ones set to benefit.

“The Territory Labor Government is capitalising on the NT’s abundance of critical minerals, our new round of exploration grants focused on companies who were looking for the minerals the world demands.

“There are exciting opportunities for the Territory to become a leading supplier of the critical minerals needed for the transition to renewable energy.”

Northern Territory Government

/Public Release. View in full here.