Minister must come clean after another reputational blow to Perth Mint

Opposition Leader Shane Love has demanded Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston come clean on the issues at Gold Corporation, following revelations of another reputational hit to the Perth Mint.

Trovio, the key issuer of Perth Mint’s cryptocurrency tokens, ‘Perth Mint Gold Token’, has pulled out of their contract with the State-owned entity, due to ongoing investigations.

Mr Love said the company’s decision to not support the product was another reputational blow to Perth Mint, at a time when the Minister responsible was out of the country and ‘uncontactable’.

“The Minister has been galivanting overseas while the issues at Gold Corp and Perth Mint were thrown into the spotlight,” Mr Love said.

“During the time he was away, we saw serious allegations of lax checks on money-laundering, and trading with high-risk customers, as well as alleged gold-doping with The London Bullion Market Association launching an investigation.

Mr Love said after weeks of the Premier denying knowledge of the issues at the State-owned entity, the Minister must clearly outline the full extent of the problems plaguing the Perth Mint.

“The Premier has continuously deflected to his scapegoat Minister and described this situation as a ‘storm in a teacup’,” Mr Love said.

“It’s now up to Minister Bill Johnston to prove this isn’t a cover-up, and come clean about what he knew, when he knew it, and what actions he took.

“If the Premier won’t answer these questions, then the Minister must – West Australian taxpayers could be on the hook for millions of dollars in penalties, they deserve to know the truth.”

Mr Love said with new revelations continuing to come to light with each passing week, there is clearly more to the problems at Gold Corp and Perth Mint than the McGowan Labor Government is letting on.

“This is why we need a Royal Commission, which has the power to compel both the Premier and Minister to give evidence under oath and to protect witnesses wanting to come forward,” Mr Love said.

“A Royal Commission is the only effective vehicle to regain confidence in Perth Mint.”