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8412.0 - Mineral and Petroleum Exploration, Australia, Jun 2000  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 25/09/2000   
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MEDIA RELEASE

September 25, 2000
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
121/2000
Mineral exploration expenditure levelled off

The trend estimate for mineral exploration expenditure levelled off in the June quarter 2000 following twelve quarters of decline, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today.

In original terms, mineral exploration expenditure for the June quarter 2000 increased by 34% ($46m) to $183m, the first increase in this series since the June quarter 1999. Western Australia was the main contributor to the June quarter increase, up $28m (33%). Exploration expenditure for gold also increased by 53% ($38m) for the quarter.

During the June quarter 2000, a total of 1.8 million metres were drilled, a 71% increase compared with the March quarter 2000.

Expenditure on petroleum exploration for this period fell by $15m (9%) to $146m.The fall in total expenditure was due to a $34m (33%) fall in offshore drilling expenditure. Conversely, other offshore expenditure increased by $20m (61%) to $53m, representing 43% of total offshore expenditure in the June quarter.

Of the published regions for petroleum exploration, Western Australia reported a fall in expenditure of 22% ($26m), while Northern Territory/Ashmore and Cartier Islands reported an increase in expenditure of 16% ($2m).

Further information can be found in Mineral and Petroleum Exploration, Australia, June Quarter 2000 (cat. no. 8412.0) available from the ABS bookshops. If you wish to purchase a copy of this publication contact the ABS bookshop in your capital city.

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