ASX and JORC invite comments on disclosure rules for listed resources companies

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20 October 2011

ASX is seeking comments by 27 January 2012 on proposed new disclosure rules for mining and oil & gas companies. JORC is seeking comments by 16 December 2011 on proposed changes to the 2004 JORC Code.

A recently released ASX Listing Rules Review Issues Paper sets out a number of important proposals for improving public reporting of exploration information, resources and reserves, and production targets by listed mining and oil and gas companies.

Separately, on 18 October, the Australasian Joint Ore Reserves Committee (JORC) published the 2011 JORC Code Review Issues Paper and invited comments on proposed changes to the 2004 JORC Code.

There is considerable overlap between the two papers (at least for mining companies, to whom the JORC Code applies). We encourage listed companies in the mining and oil and gas sectors to review the papers and share their thoughts with us, their industry body or ASX/JORC directly, as a number of the possible changes are material.

CURRENT RULES

ASX Listing Rule requirements specific to listed mining and oil and gas exploration and production companies are predominantly set out in Chapter 5 of the Listing Rules, which incorporates the JORC Code.

OBJECTIVE

The primary stated objective of the ASX and the JORC reviews is to ensure reporting is aligned with international best practice in other developed mining markets.

KEY ISSUES FOR MINING COMPANIES

The key issues and proposals for mining companies which are common to both the ASX and JORC issues papers include:

  • disclosure of additional information in relation to exploration results;
  • more stringent rules around disclosure of exploration targets;
  • disclosure of key assumptions underpinning mineral resource and ore reserve reporting;
  • defining the minimum level of study underpinning an initial ore reserve estimate;
  • rules for disclosure of production targets; and
  • annual reporting and reconciliation of mineral resources and ore reserves.

The JORC issues paper also deals with certain other issues including accountability of competent persons, updating the JORC Code to reflect previous ASX updates and the adoption of proposed CRIRSCO core standard definitions.

KEY ISSUES FOR OIL & GAS COMPANIES

The key issues and proposals in the ASX paper for oil and gas companies relate to:

  • standardised petroleum resources definitions and a common classification system;
  • general reporting requirements for reporting of reserves and resources;
  • annual reserves and resources reporting requirements;
  • disclosure of exploration and drilling results;
  • disclosure of key assumptions underpinning reserve and resource estimates;
  • disclosure of production targets; and
  • qualified reserves and resources evaluator requirements.

NEXT STEPS

JORC has requested comments on the matters raised in its paper by 16 December 2011 and ASX has requested comments on its paper by 27 January 2012.

Following the receipt of submissions and discussions both groups will make proposed amendments publicly available for a further round of stakeholder input.


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The content of this publication is for reference purposes only. It is current at the date of publication. This content does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Legal advice about your specific circumstances should always be obtained before taking any action based on this publication.


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