The Mount Todd Deed of Agreement

Date: 28 January 1993
Sub Category:Future Act Agreement (Native Title Act)
Place:Mt Todd
State/Country:Northern Territory, Australia
  • Service Delivery - $1 million worth of housing and water supplies for the Jawoyn people ($1000000)
  • Infrastructure Provision - Capital works ($60000)
  • Rental - Increased rental payment ($35000)
  • Subject Matter:Land Transaction | Mining and Minerals | Native Title | Economic Development | Education | Compensation
    Summary Information:
    A goldmine development agreement made between the Jawoyn Association, the Government of the Northern Territory of Australia and Zapopan Ltd. Under the terms of the agreement, land surrounding the mine was returned to the Jawoyn Association under enhanced Northern Territory freehold title. The agreement also included the return of land under various other titles in the region and other cultural, employment, training and housing benefits. In return, the Jawoyn Association agreed to forgo native title rights over the area of the mine, and to withdraw any repeat claims lodged by the Association under the Aboriginal Land Rights (NT) Act 1976 (Cth). Due to a decline in world gold prices, the goldmine closed at the end of 1997. While the closure of the mine had some affect on the Jawoyn, financially they had structured their businesses so that the closure of the mine would not affect their assets gained as a result of the agreement (Kauffman p107).
    Detailed Information:
    The Agreement stipulates: a. That the Jawoyn Association will not receive any royalties, rent or other revenue arising from the operation of the mine b. The benefits that will accrue to the Jawoyn include the title to land, and economic benefits such as training and employment opportunities arising from government funded positions c. Other benefits include the construction of up to six fully serviced houses on Jawoyn land, and the employment of Jawoyn people at the mine in a variety of administrative and skilled-labour roles. The Agreement also indemnifies Zapopan against any costs arising from a future claim to the land by the Jawoyn. Once freehold title has been granted to the Association, the deed states that the Association cannot create or dispose of any interest in land, ‘without first obtaining from the party in whose favour such estate or interest is created or disposed covenants in favour of Zapopan and the Territory’. In addition, the Northern Territory Government may resume any of the land for the purpose of providing access to roads, power, water and health facilities to the Mount Todd project. Further matters in the nature of additional exploration activity and the identification of sacred sites are to be resolved by consultation between Zapopan and the Jawoyn Association Additional benefits to the Jawoyn Association will include a bus service, university and non-university scholarships to suitable people from the Jawoyn community.
    The Jawoyn gained 5097 sq km of and, $1 million of housing, and employment and training. In 1995, Aboriginal people comprised 27% of the workforce. In 1997, 43 of 327 employees were Aboriginal people. Non-Aboriginal employees undertook cross-cultural training.

    Related Entries

  • Zapopan NL - Signatory
  • Northern Territory of Australia - Signatory
  • Jawoyn Association - Signatory

  • References

    National Indigenous Working Group (1998) Fact Sheet: 'Development Agreements on Native Title Lands Win-Win Solutions'


    Future Act Agreement (Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)) (Australia)