The signing of the Southern and Eastern Leases as part of South32 GEMCO’s operations on Groote Eylandt is a significant milestone for traditional owners and the mining company.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs and Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, witnessed a ceremonial signing of the agreement on Groote Eylandt today and said the Turnbull Coalition recognised the importance of the agreement and the hard work involved.
“I congratulate the traditional owners on signing this agreement and the opportunities they have set up for themselves and their communities,” Minister Scullion said.
“The traditional owners, the Anindilyakwa Land Council and South32 have engaged in negotiations for some time and I commend them all on the spirit in which these have been conducted.
“I thank the traditional owners and the Land Council for acknowledging the impact that royalty payments can have on school attendance and including measures in the agreement to minimise any impact such payments could have.
“It is also positive that South32 and the Land Council have worked together to negotiate an economic development package that will ensure the mine provides benefits to the community now and for many years to come.
“I look forward to working with South32 to ensure we make the most of every opportunity available to employ local Indigenous residents in the mine and ensure this agreement leaves a sustainable legacy for the communities on Groote Eylandt.”
The Commonwealth Minister for Indigenous Affairs is responsible for approving and consenting to the lease under the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976.