Indigenous entrepreneurialism and mining land use agreements

Indigenous entrepreneurialism and mining land use agreements Electronic Book Section

CAEPR Research Monograph

  • Author(s): Holcombe, S
  • Secondary Author(s): J. Altman, D. Martin
  • Tertiary Author(s): ANU ePress
  • Published: 2009
  • Publisher: Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, Australian National University

Abstract: In the Pilbara region of Western Australia, the focus of this chapter, the mining boom—or the ‘ramp up’ in production as it is referred to within the industry—is such that negotiations for land access have intensified and annual payments to the Indigenous organisations examined here have increased threefold since 1997. These organisations are the Gumala Aboriginal Corporation (Gumala) and Gumala Investments Pty Ltd (GIPL); set up to manage the Yandicoogina Agreement (YLUA). This chapter critically examines the mechanisms through which Indigenous beneficiaries are able to articulate to a Land Use Agreement (LUA) as individuals, with specific attention to possibilities for entrepreneurial activity. The range of possibilities for direct and tangible benefits from agreements is a key area of Indigenous concern. Because of the complexity of the land use agreements examined for this project, this chapter will only focus on Rio Tinto’s YLUA in the Hamersley Ranges of the Pilbara. Indigenous ‘beneficiaries’ operate in a politically volatile and economically expansive context in this area of engagement with the mining sector and the organisations developed to manage the agreements.

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Holcombe, S, 2009, Indigenous entrepreneurialism and mining land use agreements, Electronic Book Section, viewed 09 December 2023,

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