QRC work

Information on the work and activities of QRC in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic including correspondence, member surveys and media.

View below

QRC media

QRC will continue to share information and inform our resource communities about the industry’s response to COVID-19.

Media statements

The latest media statements on COVID-19 from QRC:

Social media

Follow the QRC on social media to keep up-to-date with the latest industry news and information.

Interview footage of QRC CEO Ian Macfarlane

Resources role in COVID-19 recovery

Company implementation of FIFO measures

Resources major role in COVID-19 recovery

Queensland resources strong going into COVID-19

QRC COVID-19 Working Group

Since February, the QRC COVID-19 Working Group has maintained in regular contact with the sector’s leaders and safety experts with a twice-weekly teleconference meeting. As an industry, it remains critical we continue to share information and inform our resource communities and the broader Queensland community about the industry’s response to COVID-19.

The Working Group is made up of one representative per QRC full member company. Local and state Government have been invited to join the second-half hour of the call to provide and receive updates.

To view the briefing summaries from past teleconference meetings of the working group, click here.

QRC surveys

The QRC has developed several surveys to understand the impacts and challenges facing its members throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, the QRC’s surveys have focused on the workforce challenges and safety initiatives undertaken by its members. The results obtained have greatly assisted the QRC to provide factual and timely advice to local, state and federal authorities.

In particular, the results from QRC member surveys have assisted the QRC to:

  • Demonstrate the ‘people first’ approach of the sector – QRC members have undertaken a range of measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, including staff education, enforcement of social distancing measures, securing chartered flights, temperature testing staff before travel, and offering opportunities to live locally.
  • Reliably advise authorities on the impacts of border restrictions – QRC advice demonstrated the significant steps taken by members to constrain interstate FIFO to a small number of critical workers.
  • Establish the industry’s role in Queensland’s post-COVID-19 recovery – At a time when large parts of the Queensland economy are struggling, survey results showed that 58% of QRC member CEOs said they planned to maintain or increase their workforce over the next three months.

The QRC sincerely appreciates the tireless efforts of its members to respond to the surveys despite the challenging times. Your assistance has greatly supported the sector to develop a range of workable protocols and initiatives to protect resource sector workers and the communities in which they operate.

QRC correspondence

Resource Industry Recovery Agenda

AMEC and QRC have outlined 40 recommendations focused on industry recovery spanning infrastructure investment, fiscal stability, Regulatory and streamlining reform and industry initiatives.

Click here to view the Resource Industry Recovery Agenda

QRC Streamlining Report

The report is a decade review of the 2009/2010 streamlining project and offers 20 recommendations focused on streamlining and efficiency improvements of the assessment and operating processes.

Click here to view the Streamlining Report

Government Assistance Requested

QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane wrote to Premier Palaszczuk on 23 March to support the Queensland Government’s swift action to assist business since the pandemic of COVID-19 was declared.  Further to the measures already put in place such as the payroll tax deferral, QRC suggested a variety of immediate support measures which Government could provide to the sector over the next six months (outlined below).

Primarily, these measures should focus on ‘suspend and extend’ – an explicit suspension of required compliance with work program activities and an extension of upcoming relinquishment requirements.

  • Provide relief from operational fees and charges such as tenure rents, applications, transaction fees and Environmental Authority annual fees;
  • Suspension of strict compliance on work program timeframes and expenditures on tenures;
  • Extend (or provide relief) for compliance with Environmental Authorities where activities necessary to meet conditions are affected by COVID-19;
  • Accelerate industry support initiatives, such as the Collaborative Exploration Initiative; and
  • Suspend live regulatory reforms that are currently generating operational uncertainty for industry such as the Lake Eyre Basin proposal.

QRC received the following advice from the Department on 16 April 2020:

The department understands that the resources sector, along with many other important parts of the Queensland economy, is experiencing difficulties in the current economic climate.

It is important that resource companies that have concerns around their ability to meet their tenure obligations, as a result of COVID-19, remain in close contact with the department so that we can work with them through these challenges.

Applications for variations to work program and expenditure commitments can be submitted via normal lodgement processes, such as MyMinesOnline.

QRC member company initiatives

Queensland’s resources sector understands the community concerns about coronavirus and is strictly following the advice of health authorities to stop the spread. Aside from implementing and enforcing procedures across all areas of operation to adhere to national protocols, the industry continues to work collectively with governments, suppliers, communities and employees across the state during this difficult time.

See below for a few examples of how QRC’s member companies are assisting our communities:

AGL Energy COVID-19 Customer Support Program

For retail customers and small and medium business customers who are impacted by COVID-19, AGL are extending payment terms and suspending disconnections.

Anglo American Community Response Plan

Anglo American is reducing payment terms for all small-to-medium business to 14 days, supporting vulnerable groups through their grants programme and helping with critical supplies to regions.

Anglo donation of laptops

Our member company Anglo American is supporting the communities in which they operate by donating devices to help with at home learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. The 100 laptop computers and mobile broadband connections will help ensure families in Middlemount, Moranbah, Moura, Theodore and Banana have access to the technology they need to support their education and advance their technology skills.

Aurizon donation towards UQ’s COVID-19 vaccine development

Aurizon has provided a $250,000 donation towards the development of a COVID-19 vaccine by the University of Queensland (UQ) using its breakthrough Molecular Clamp technology.

BHP donation to set up clinics

The COVID-19 pandemic has put a strain on public health facilities across Australia. BHP has donated $7.59 million to Vanguard Health Australia which will help set up and service two clinics in Central Queensland offering walk-in, drive-in, telehealth and regional outreach facilities.

BHP Vital Resources Fund

BHP will establish a $50 million (AUD) Vital Resources Fund to help support regional Australian communities in its areas of operation through the challenges of COVID-19.

Glencore NQ Metals PPE donation for Mount Isa

Glencore donated hundreds of pairs of plastic goggles to the Mount Isa Hospital to help frontline emergency staff to provide essential services amongst the COVID-19 pandemic

Glencore employing displaced staff from Spotless Group

The resources industry is employing displaced staff from Spotless Group hospitality business due to the effects of COVID-19. Employees who provided catering services at Brisbane City Hall will temporarily relocate to support our member company Glencore with their increased operational demand.

Glencore investing in UQ development of COVID vaccine

QRC member company Glencore has invested $725,000 into the The University of Queensland’s development of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Mitsubishi Development and Wesley Medical Research

QRC member company Mitsubishi Development Pty Ltd has partnered with the Wesley Medical Research’s COVID-19 Rapid Response Research Centre to deliver vital mental health services in the Bowen Basin, aiming to help communities through the hardships caused by the pandemic.

Origin’s response to Coronavirus

Origin Energy has committed to not disconnect any residential or mall business customers in financial stress until at least 31 July 2020, not listing defaults for customers who have trouble paying and pausing all late payment fees.

Rio Tinto’s COVID-19 contributions

Rio Tinto has invested $25 million globally to support initiatives such as the supply of masks and protective equipment to emergency and health professionals, donations to national and local communities and hospitals and further investment in education and financial literacy programs.

South32 Supporting our Communities

South32 are contributing US$5 million globally to our communities to areas that need it most, which includes providing access to essential hygiene and medical supplies, developing public health education campaigns and supporting those at risk who cannot access critical goods and services.

Companies continuing with Apprenticeships despite COVID

Glencore, BHP and Hastings Deering will push ahead with their apprenticeship intake programs for 2021 to help fast-track the State’s economy post COVID-19. 150 opportunities across the three intakes.

Follow QRC on our social media channels to keep informed of our member company’s initiatives.