|The Pro forma section 31 Deed for Petroleum Exploration Permits is one of nine pro forma templates that were jointly developed by the Victorian Government, the Victorian Minerals & Energy Council (VMEC) and Native Title Services Victoria (NTSV - formerly Mirimbiak Nations Aboriginal Corporation, the native title representative body for Victoria). Final versions of these pro forma templates (dated December 2003) were officially released on 21 April 2004.
'These pro forma templates have been developed to assist resource companies and Indigenous communities in negotiations. The templates contain a raft of terms and conditions that have already been agreed to by the Victorian Minerals and Energy Council and Native Title Services Victoria. The agreements came about due to a shared interest in streamlining the Commonwealth's Native Title Act 'right to negotiate' process to reduce time, cost, and uncertainty for all parties.' (Department of Primary Industries (Vic): http://www.dpi.vic.gov.au/dpi/nrenmp.nsf/FID/-771FC61DA38AADE74A256A72001EF70E?OpenDocument (at 9 July 2004).
The pro forma can be altered to suit individual circumstances, however any alterations are subject to agreement by the parties, as explained in the foreword to the pro forma, which states that 'Parties to particular negotiations may wish to vary this document, however NTSV, the State and VMEC reserve their positions regarding any variations.' The one-page Foreword sets out the circumstances under which it is relevant to use this pro forma.
A copy of this pro forma template is available to download from the Department of Primary Industries website. Click the URL link provided under the Details section below.|