Monday, July 15, 2024

Minister extends Kermadec Arc mineral reservation

A reservation over the Kermadec Arc preventing the granting or extending of minerals prospecting, exploration, and mining permits will be extended for 18 months from 5 July, Resources Minister Shane Jones announced today.

The Minister’s declaration, enabled under the Crown Minerals Act 1991, will extend consecutive existing reservations, the latest of which is set to expire on 4 July, 2024.

“I’ve been clear about my ambitions to leverage New Zealand’s mineral resources to stimulate economic development opportunities in our regions, improve the security and affordability of our energy and resources supplies and increase our self-sufficiency to protect again volatile international markets,” Mr Jones says.

“I have also been clear that I am committed to a long-term, strategic approach to the development of mineral resources which ensures we are mining the right minerals in the right places at the right times.

“Through the draft Minerals Strategy for New Zealand to 2040, which I launched in May, I proposed a stocktake of New Zealand’s known mineral potential, including in the Kermadec Arc, and the development of a critical minerals list that will identify minerals essential to our economic functions and which face supply risks.”

That work is still underway and once completed, will support the Crown to make decisions about any potential minerals development activities within the Kermadec Arc, in the context of the extensive minerals opportunities onshore, in New Zealand territorial waters, and in other areas of our Exclusive Economic Zone, said the Minister.

“We currently don’t have a good understanding of industry demand for mineral permits for this area and by extending this reservation I’m ensuring we have time to collect industry views so that, if the time comes, efficient allocation of mineral rights can be made to maximise benefits to New Zealand.”

The new minerals reservation over the Kermadec Arc will expire on 4 January 2026 at which time the Minister for Resources can again make a statutory decision whether to re-establish the reservation or allow it to lapse.

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