The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures show further increases in mineral exploration.

Data for the September quarter indicated mineral exploration expenditure rose 7.7% ($51.5m) to $716.3m. Brownfield exploration was up 7.1% ($27.7m) and greenfield expenditure rose 8.7% ($23.8m).

Meters drilled for greenfields exploration were up 20.8%, thanks largely to the most significant boost in expenditure coming from Selected Base Metals (up 10.7%, $20.1m).

Total expenditure rose in Queensland by 18.7%, Northern Territory rose by 12.0%, Western Australia by 9.9%, New South Wales by 1.6%, Victoria fell by 3%, South Australia by 30.4%, and Tasmania by 39.2%.

The trend estimate for petroleum exploration expenditure rose 8.0% ($26.1m) to $352.8m in the September quarter 2019. Exploration on production leases fell 17.8% (-$9.4m) and exploration expenditure on all other areas rose 12.5% ($34.3m).

Onshore petroleum exploration expenditure rose 10.8% ($13.1m) to $133.9m, while offshore petroleum exploration expenditure rose 6.1% to $218.5m.