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Queensland Judgments
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  • Unreported Judgment

Rolleston Coal Holdings Pty Ltd v The Deputy Premier, Treasurer & Minister for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships

 

[2020] QSC 223

SUPREME COURT OF QUEENSLAND

CITATION:

Rolleston Coal Holdings Pty Ltd & Ors v The Deputy Premier, Treasurer & Minister for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships [2020] QSC 223

PARTIES:

ROLLESTON COAL HOLDINGS PTY LIMITED

ACN 098 156 702

(first applicant)

and

SUMISHO COAL AUSTRALIA PTY LIMITED

ACN 061 524 249

(second applicant)

and

ICR AUSTRALIA PTY LTD t/a ITOCHU COAL RESOURCES AUSTRALIA PTY LTD ACN 072 596 733

(third applicant)

and

ICRA SMM PTY LTD ACN 106 260 584

(fourth applicant)

v

THE DEPUTY PREMIER, TREASURER AND MINISTER FOR ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER PARTNERSHIPS

(respondent)

FILE NO/S:

14131 of 2019

DIVISION:

Civil

PROCEEDING:

Application

ORIGINATING COURT:

Supreme Court at Brisbane

DELIVERED ON:

1 June 2020

DELIVERED AT:

Brisbane

HEARING DATE:

1 June 2020

JUDGE:

Dalton J

ORDER:

Application Dismissed

COUNSEL:

D Butler for the Applicants

M Brennan QC for the Respondent

SOLICITORS:

King & Wood Mallesons for the Applicants

The Crown Solicitor for the Respondent

HER HONOUR:   Well, Ms Brennan, I do not think I really need to hear you on that. 

I am pretty firmly of the view that it is not a commercial matter. 

The amount of money at issue, quite frankly, is irrelevant if the matter is within the jurisdiction of the Court. 

It is an administrative law matter for judicial review.  It might be accepted that the applicant in each case is a coal mining company; it certainly does not mean that every dispute that a coal mining company gets into, therefore, becomes a commercial matter. 

I suppose it might be possible that in a hypothetical case that the questions before the administrative decision-maker are so caught up with questions of commerce or construction of commercial documents or practices in commerce that there is a commercial flavour to the questions that need to be decided.  I suppose, therefore, that it might be possible for an administrative law judicial review matter to end up on the commercial list, but this is not such a case when the matters for review are examined.  They are typical questions of administrative law;  they are not questions, as I say, that have a commercial flavour or where there are commercial documents or commercial practices to be examined, so, in my view, it is, quite clearly, not a commercial matter.

I will just add that the commercial list judges do not have a roving commission to collect any interesting looking matters that come along.  It must be accepted that there is some flexibility, and, I suppose, vagueness about the definition of what is a commercial matter.  But the commercial list judges are given special powers in this Court to deal with commercial matters, and they are powers which, to some extent, are not examinable upon appeal, so they have to be carefully exercised, and, as I say, this matter is plainly not a commercial matter, in my view. 

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Editorial Notes

  • Published Case Name:

    Rolleston Coal Holdings Pty Ltd & Ors v The Deputy Premier, Treasurer & Minister for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships

  • Shortened Case Name:

    Rolleston Coal Holdings Pty Ltd v The Deputy Premier, Treasurer & Minister for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships

  • MNC:

    [2020] QSC 223

  • Court:

    QSC

  • Judge(s):

    Dalton J

  • Date:

    01 Jun 2020

Appeal Status

Please note, appeal data is presently unavailable for this judgment. This judgment may have been the subject of an appeal.
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