The bigger take bankrolls infrastructure and social services, but mining companies say the squeeze could dent investment and jobs
Some major coal-exporting countries are reaping the benefits of higher demand for the fossil fuel after sharply raising levies on miners with plans to direct the windfall to everything from hospitals to roads, welfare programs to power-system upgrades.
Increased coal taxes and royalties—payments for the right to extract resources—are expected to add billions of dollars combined to government coffers in three of the world’s biggest exporters, Australia, Colombia and Indonesia, as a global energy shortage delays some countries’ efforts to quit coal.
Annual coal demand likely surpassed 8 billion metric tons for the first time in 2022 as Europe sought more coal to replace Russian natural gas, leading prices in many parts of the world to more than double.
Taking a larger share of coal miners’ profits is helping repair state budgets hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, and pay for retraining of coal-sector workers and other projects to diversify away from coal. On Tuesday, the Queensland government in Australia said increased coal-royalty revenue would help fund a $3.3 billion power-transmission line that it hopes will encourage investment in both renewable energy infrastructure and critical minerals projects.
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