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Critical Minerals & High-Tech Metals Activation Fund – Round 1 | Stream 2

NSW Critical Minerals & High-Tech Metals

Round 1 | Stream 2 – Enabling Project Infrastructure

Newsletter | October 5, 2022


The NSW Government is unlocking this potential through the $130 million Critical Minerals and High-Tech Metals Activation Fund. The fund supports investment across the entire value chain, from exploration and processing to activating new supply chains and commercialising new technologies and applications.

Stream 2 – Enabling Project Infrastructure is a competitive process which aims to co-fund strategic infrastructure in the critical minerals and high-tech metals sector that is needed to:

  • expedite the development of investment-ready projects nearing construction and operation
  • address infrastructure blockages with potential multi-user benefits
  • support the delivery of key infrastructure needed to accelerate the industry in regional NSW

Funding will be delivered to:

  • unlocking project blockages to expedite project delivery through strategic infrastructure investment
  • accelerating the development of projects as an enabler for future investment
  • supporting new capacity in critical minerals processing
  • supporting scale-up and commercialisation of research and development, including emerging technologies and markets, and supporting new industry applications
  • enabling growth in the sector, securing a local supply of valuable critical minerals and high-tech metals for future use including the transition to a clean economy
  • positioning regional NSW as the leading jurisdiction in the critical minerals and high-tech metals sector, attracting investment to the entire critical minerals supply chain
  • promoting exploration and discoveries, creating an ongoing pipeline of critical minerals and high-tech metal resources in regional NSW
  • developing local skills and addressing skills gaps to support diversification within the mining sector.



  • Grant amount: From $2 million and $10 million (excluding GST) for eligible activities
  • Application opened: 26 September 2022
  • Application closes: 31 October 2022, 5pm
  • Application notifications: 12th December 2022
  • The streams will be delivered independently of each other and are not sequential – applicants to Stream 2 are not required to have submitted an application for Stream 1.



Applicants must hold an Australian Business Number (ABN) and must operate, or be developing a mineral project, or conducting research within the critical minerals and high-tech metals industry, or as part of the critical minerals/high-tech metals supply chain, and be one of the following:

  • a company incorporated in Australia
  • a company limited by guarantee
  • an incorporated trustee on behalf of a corporate trust
  • an incorporated association or co-operative
  • a corporate Commonwealth entity, or State and Territory business enterprise which undertake publicly funded research
  • a Publicly Funded Research Organisation
  • an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Corporation registered under the Corporations (Aboriginal and /or Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006.

To be eligible to receive funding, applicants must:

  • be registered for GST
  • operate, or be developing a mineral project, or conducting research within the critical minerals and high-tech metals industry, or as part of the critical minerals/high-tech metals supply chain
  • demonstrate financial and technical capacity to deliver the proposed studies
  • provide evidence of their $20 million Public Liability Insurance or confirmation that a Public Liability Insurance Policy of at least $20 million will be taken out prior to the execution of the Funding Deed.

Applications from consortiums are encouraged. An organisation must be appointed as the lead applicant and satisfy the eligibility criteria. The lead applicant is authorised to act on behalf of and bind each member of the consortium and, if the application is successful, enter into the funding deed and be ultimately responsible for delivering the project. The application must include a letter of support from each organisation involved in the application.



Examples of eligible projects include:

Transport infrastructure including:

  • off-site and on-site road and rail upgrades and modifications
  • heavy-haulage route upgrades
  • road widening
  • pavement strengthening.

Power infrastructure, including:

  • conversion to renewable energy sources
  • substation installation
  • extension or new powerlines
  • installation of a solar farm
  • installation of large-scale power storage facilities.

Water infrastructure, including:

  • water treatment plants
  • water supply pipelines
  • processing infrastructure including trial processing plants
  • mine waste processing plant facilities
  • establishing or expanding a processing, pilot, or demonstration plant
  • environmental protection infrastructure including fencing, but excluding rehabilitation costs
  • Modifications/additional circuits to processing facilities

Examples of ineligible infrastructure include:

  • site offices
  • housing or worker accommodation camps
  • tailings dams or tailings storage
  • mine development



Eligible costs may only be incurred after both parties have executed the funding deed and before the completion date, such as:

  • infrastructure capital costs and civil costs
  • development, upgrade, or expansion of enabling project infrastructure, and associated utilities or civil works
  • purchase and installation of fixed plant required to commission infrastructure (new or upgraded)
  • costs for technical, project management and direct labour costs of employees who are directly engaged on the project, to a maximum of 20% of the total project cost
  • contractor costs to deliver enabling infrastructure by a third party outside of the applicant’s organisation, excluding individuals who are recognised as an employee
  • contingency, to a maximum of 25% of the total project cost
  • reasonable travel expenses incurred to deliver the project.


NSW Government Critical Minerals and High-Tech Metals Priority List

Critical minerals are metallic or non-metallic element that are essential for the functioning of our modern technologies, economies or national security and there is a risk that its supply chains could be disrupted. High-tech metals are those metals that support the rapidly growing high-technology industries, which are fueled by consumer demand for a high-tech, connected and environmentally sustainable future

View the list of priority Critical Minerals and High-Tech Metals here

More Information

Stream 2 Guidelines

Stream 2 FAQs


For further tips for lodging your Critical Minerals and High-Tech Metals claim,
Give us a call or schedule an assessment


Ryan can assist with services such as:

  • Scope your potential to claim various grant programs
  • Assist with the preparation and lodgement of grant applications
  • Review or provide a health check on your internally prepared grant applications
  • Establish record-keeping practices as required under various grant programs
  • Provide prepayment loans against future cash refunds under the R&D Tax Incentive
  • Keeping industry informed on all new Government policy and grant initiatives

Don’t hesitate to give us a call or schedule a free assessment.