Fracking company Tamboran ought to pay back the $7.5 million taxpayer grant it received from the Federal Government last year before it shifts to Delaware in the USA, a known tax secrecy jurisdiction.
The company announced yesterday it planned to relocate to Delaware in order to “better (position) Tamboran Group in a deeper capital market in the United States where shale investors are more active”.
In 2021, the Senate Inquiry into fracking in the Northern Territory heard Sweetpea Petroleum, now a subsidiary of Tamboran, was previously owned by a US investment firm that had created a shell company, Longview Petroleum LLC, in Delaware.
The decision comes after a report revealed poor early stage drilling results at Tamboran’s Amungee 2H exploratory fracking well in the Beetaloo (See page 12).
Frack Free NT spokesperson Phil Scott said it was unsurprising the company planned to move to a tax secrecy jurisdiction in the United States.
“There is massive public opposition to fracking in the NT, the Beetaloo is a very remote place, making operations very expensive, and there are early signs to suggest Tamboran is not delivering the results it expected. No wonder it wants to relocate to a known tax secrecy jurisdiction in America,” he said.
“It makes sense that this company might feel more comfortable in a place like Delaware, in a country that has unfortunately allowed fracking to run rampant, with communities there paying the price with their health.
“While Tamboran’s planned move to Delaware is not illegal, I don’t think it would pass a Territory pub test.
“It will be far harder for the Australian public to scrutinise Tamboran’s corporate activity if it is successful in delisting.
“At the bare minimum, Tamboran ought to pay back the taxpayer cash it was granted by the previous Federal Government.
“This makes it even more important that the Federal Government makes good on its election promise to extend the “water trigger” to shale gas fracking projects so the impacts can be assessed by a national panel of water experts.”