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Thanks for the comment, Ronald. We agree in the main, and argue that first-in first-assessed is generally more proficient. In exceptional circumstances, competitive bids may be appropriate, but those conditions must, either way, be clearly stipulated in law and not decided behind closed doors.

I can understand the concept of tendering out old mines, and lapsed/revoked licences where the mineral rights can somehow be quantified, if there are assets (whether mineral resources or datasets) that can be assessed.

But I disagree with tendering out virgin land, for grassroots exploration.  Firstly, it would be difficult to determine fair value, and secondly, such a process risks being biased against the junior exploration sector.