There were 12 mining sector deals announced in 2017 totalling $4.6 billion, a rise of 448% from 2016.
This was larger growth than real estate (33%), healthcare (12%), food & agribusiness (8%) and infrastructure (4%).
"This large increase was mostly driven by the $3.4 billion acquisition of Rio Tinto's thermal coal assets by Yancoal," the report states.
"There was, however, a continuing investment focus on lithium, gold and non-ferrous metals."
Yancoal, which is majority owned by Chinese giant Yanzhou, expanded its presence in Australia with the purchase of Rio Tinto's Coal & Allied thermal coal assets, which include the Hunter Valley ...