The major parties have blown yet another chance for Australians to get a fair return for the exploitation of their sovereignly-owned natural resources.
One Nation leader Senator Pauline Hanson said Australia received the lowest return in exchange for its resources of any country in the world.
“Australia is the laughing stock of the world because of the failure of successive Labor and Coalition governments to put in place a system which ensures Australians reap the benefits of the country’s enormous wealth of mineral and energy resources,” Senator Hanson said.
“My bill to broaden the object of the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006 to ensure our resources were exploited for the benefit of the Australian community was firmly rejected by the major parties in the Senate today.
“They can’t bring themselves to fight for the interests of the Australian people. Instead, they’ve fought for the interests of the foreign-owned multinationals which are ripping off the Australian people.
“Norway has a sovereign wealth fund approaching $2 trillion from the exploitation of Norwegian resources. Qatar gets $26 billion a year just from its LNG exports.
“Australia by comparison gets very little from its vast reserves of natural gas.
“Exports from the North-West shelf are valued at more than $80 billion, but we are lucky to receive $2-300 million in revenue from it.
“In the meantime, our gas is exported to our competitors at prices lower than our domestic prices while vast reserves are banked for future exports, leaving Australians with a shortage of domestic gas.
“My legislation was aimed at increasing the domestic supply of gas for the benefit of the Australian people, but the major parties can’t bring themselves to actually benefit the Australian people.
“Contributions to the debate by Coalition senators were probably written by the foreign-owned multinationals themselves, who always use the ‘sovereign risk’ threat to cow the major parties.
“They’ve used the excuse my amendment would allow climate activists to conduct lawfare against developments. They’re already doing this, so that excuse simply doesn’t wash.
“I acknowledge and thank the few senators who understood their job is to always benefit Australians and supported my bill. I will never stop fighting to ensure Australians get a fair return for their resources.”