QUEENSLAND prides itself on being a resources powerhouse, yet according to research by accounting giant PwC very few up and coming mining companies are based here.

PwC's survey of the 50 largest listed mining companies with a market cap of less than $5 billion and an average market cap of slighly more than $1.2 billion found that only four were based in Brisbane - New Hope (coal), Coronado Global Resources (coal), Orocobre (lithium) and Aurelia (gold, copper).

PwC Australia national mining leader Debbie Smith says that Brisbane tends to host divisions of bigger mining companes such as BHP, Rio Tinto and Mitsui along with a range of smaller explorers.

Smith says most of the mid-tiers, also known as the MT50, are based in Perth close to the gold fields and big iron ore deposits.


Mining is helping drive economic recovery.
Mining is helping drive economic recovery.

PwC says mid-tier miners are outperforming the market and showing resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, setting them up to resource Australia's recovery.

Smith puts their strength down to their focus on health and safety, which meant they were able to maintain production during the pandemic, and also the fact that most mine gold. As we know, gold is a valued investment during troubled times.

"The MT50 have collectively paid $1.5 billion in mineral royalties and more than $3.5 billion in dividends to shareholders in the past year," she says. "Our estimates show the group also employs more than 50,000 people globally; even more if you count the jobs created for contractors and communities."


TOP 50 (change in market cap June 2019 to June 2020)

Alumina -30% to $4679m

Mineral Resources +42% to $3976m

Iluka Resources -21% to $3606m

Oz Minerals +9% to $3553m

Alacer Gold Corp +100% to $2929m

IGO +3% to $2877m

Yancoal Aust -35% to $2680m

Regis Resources -1% to $2653m

St Barbara +8% to $2215m

OceanaGold -14% to $2094m

Silver Lake Resources +83% to $1874m

Ramelius Rsources +236% to $1604m

Perseus Mining +124% to $1530m

Gold Road Resources +69% to $1469m

Whitehaven Coal -61% to $1419m

Lynas Corp -21% to $1353m

Champion Iron +4% to $1352m

Nickel Mines +98% to $1256m

Resolute Mining +24% to $1252m

New Hope Corp -50% to $1135m

Zimplats Holdings +26% to $1118m

De Grey Mining +3123% to $1061m

Sandfire Resources -15% to $904m

Coronado Global Resources -75% to $894m

Westgold Resources +15% to $836m

West African Resources +182% to $796m

Bellevue Gold +107% to $726m

Westerrn Areas +35% to $723m

Mount Gibson Iron -39% to $706m

Alkane Resources +204% to $699m

Orocobre -13% to $640m

Capricorn Metals +604% to $587m

ERA +467% to $572m

Pilbara Minerals -45% to $556m

Juiter Mines -23% to $522m

Aurelia Metals +2% to $437m

Red 5 +75% to $392m

Tribune Resources +26% to $382m

Legend Mining +540% to $353m

Galaxy Resources -37% to $317m

Pantoro +45% to $312m

Cardinal Resources +138% to $310m

Chalice Gold Mines +844% to $302m

Mincor Resources +129% to $289m

Grange Resources -7% to $281m

Emerald Resources +138% to $275m

Magnetic Resources +218% to $270m

OM Holdings -59% to $250m

Dacian Gold +107% to $248m

Adriatic Metals +58% to $236m



COVID-19 might have delayed it, but Phil Dickinson's Noosa mining conference still managed to assemble another large gathering earlier this month.

Dickinson tells City Beat that approximately 300 attendees met in person and more than 1,000 joined online, with presentations from more than 70 ASX-listed resource and energy companies Australia-wide at the hybrid event.

Although restrictions prevented another Surf Club bash, mining entrepreneur Steve Bizzell again sponsored drinks for the thirsty miners, followed by networking dinner at the popular Bistro C and elsewhere.


Phil Dickinson, organiser of the Noosa Mining Conference. Pic Annette Dew
Phil Dickinson, organiser of the Noosa Mining Conference. Pic Annette Dew

Among the Brisbane miners presenting, Diatreme's Neil McIntyre pointed to a bright future for the silica sand miner amid the ongoing solar energy boom in the Asia-Pacific, while the gleam of gold was in the eyes of Platina's Corey Nolan and tin for Elementos' Chris Dunks.

Lake Resources' Steve Promnitz also pointed to a bright future for lithium miners, with electric vehicle sales surging in Europe and North America.

The good news is the regular July event appears back on the cards for 2021, while the organisers are also planning a Brisbane conference from March 17-18.





Originally published as Top 50 miners driving our recovery