Offshore Minerals Retention Licence - Australian Government


You will require this licence if you intend to explore and recover minerals in an offshore area for a limited time within your exploration licence area.

This licence is an intermediate form of tenure, between exploration and mining licences. It allows the holder of an exploration licence to retain, for a strictly limited time, title to an area on which a significant mineral deposit has been identified, which is not a commercially viable proposition in the short term but has reasonable prospect for development in the longer term.

The holder can retain an area under strict conditions until market or technological developments make exploitation of the resource possible.

Service type


A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for this licence you must:

  • specify the blocks (the areas) for which the application is made
  • state why you are applying for a retention licence rather than a mining licence
  • specify the mineral deposit you have identified and evaluated and believe is commercially viable in the longer term
  • outline your assessment of the present and potential commercial viability of the mineral deposit
  • outline the overall work program you have already carried out under the exploration licence on the blocks covered by the application
  • specify the activities you intend to carry out on the block or blocks covered by the application
  • provide the amount of money you intend to spend on those activities and the amount already spent in connection with the exploration licence on the blocks covered by the application
  • outline the technical qualifications of yourself and your employees who are likely to be involved in activities authorised by the licence
  • provide details of the technical advice and financial resources available to you
  • specify, if the licence is to be held by more than one person, the share of the licence that each prospective holder will hold
  • provide maps that relate to the blocks and comply with relevant guidelines.


As specified on your licence, but cannot exceed 5 years. This licence may be renewed.


Fees Details for this service in table format.

Task Type Business Structure Amount Description
Apply Application All $3000.00

Fees for 2023-24. Other fees may apply. Please consult the Contact Officer for more information.

Renew Renewal All $600.00

Fees for 2023-24


Act(s) name

Offshore Minerals Act 1994 Australian Government

Regulation(s) name

Offshore Minerals (Fees) Regulations 2018 Australian Government

Administering agency

Department of Industry, Science and Resources


Offshore Resources

Contact details

Contact Email, Phone and Address Details for this service in simple two column table format, header then data.