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1367.5 - Western Australian Statistical Indicators, Dec 2007  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/01/2008   
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Mineral exploration expenditure (trend) in Western Australia rose 10.6% (up $26 million) to $271 million in the September quarter 2007 - the seventh consecutive quarterly rise. Since the December quarter 2005 ($144 million), the state's mineral exploration expenditure has risen at an average rate of 8.2% per quarter, much higher than the long-run average of 1.2% per quarter since the series began in the September quarter 1988.

Graph: Mineral exploration expenditure, total minerals

In original terms, Western Australia's mineral exploration expenditure rose 54.2% ($103 million) through the year to September quarter 2007, mainly due to increased exploration of iron ore (up $38 million or 57.4%) and nickel, cobalt (up $30 million or 95.5%). Other notable increases were in gold (up $12 million or 18.2%), silver, lead, zinc (up $8 million or 88.5%) and copper (up $6 million or 135.6%). Petroleum exploration expenditure (original) in Western Australia rose 88.5% ($257 million) to $547 million through the year to September quarter 2007.


The production of most mineral types fell in Western Australia through the year to September quarter 2007, including diamonds (down 40.6%), ilmenite (down 13.0%), gold (down 7.3%), bauxite (down 4.9%) and nickel (down 2.1%). There was however increased production in zinc (up 163.6%) and iron ore (up 1.6%). In terms of energy, crude oil production was down 14.8% through the year, while production rose for natural gas (up 6.3%) and electricity (up 4.2%).

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