Mining News

Saskatchewan ranks first in Canada and second worldwide in annual global mining survey; Ontario and B.C. slipping

Posted by Cheryl Rutledge on 3/2/2015 3:49:51 PM

By Taylor Jackson and Kenneth P. Green

Saskatchewan is the most attractive jurisdiction for mining investment in Canada, according to an annual global survey of mining executives released by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian policy think-tank.

The Fraser Institute Annual Survey of Mining Companies, 2014, rates 122 jurisdictions around the world based on their geologic attractiveness and the extent to which government policies encourage exploration and investment. Saskatchewan ranks as the top jurisdiction in Canada and finishes second worldwide behind Finland.

“In addition to being blessed with an abundance of mineral potential, Saskatchewan gets credit for having a government with a transparent and productive approach to mining policy,” said Kenneth Green, Fraser Institute senior director of energy and natural resources and director of the Survey of Mining Companies.

“The province offers a competitive taxation regime, good scientific support, efficient permitting procedures and clarity around land claims. That’s what miners look for.”

In total, five Canadian jurisdictions finished in the top 10 worldwide: Saskatchewan (2), Manitoba (4), Quebec (6), Newfoundland and Labrador (8) and Yukon (9). Of note is Quebec whose placement suggests that the province’s reputation for mining investment has rebounded after a three-year period of increased red tape, higher royalties and regulatory uncertainty.

Two of Canada’s other geographically large jurisdictions — Ontario and British Columbia — didn’t fare as well. Internationally, Ontario places 23rd and B.C. ranks 28th falling nine and 12 spots, respectively, from the 2013 survey.

“In Ontario, the New Mining Act amendments regarding First Nations consultation have resulted in complete incomprehensibility of rights on all sides,” Green said.

“Similarly in British Columbia, uncertainty concerning disputed land claims and ambiguity about what regions will be protected are deterrents to investment and exploration.”

The survey was conducted between August 26 and November 15, 2014 and includes the responses of 485 mineral exploration and development company executives from around the world. Exploration budgets reported by companies participating in the survey totalled US$2.7 billion in 2014 and US$3.2 billion in 2013.

Canadian rankings:

  1. Saskatchewan
  2. Manitoba
  3. Quebec
  4. Newfoundland and Labrador
  5. Yukon
  6. Northwest Territories
  7. New Brunswick
  8. Alberta
  9. Ontario
  10. British Columbia
  11. Nunavut
  12. Nova Scotia

Worldwide rankings (Top 10):

  1. Finland
  2. Saskatchewan
  3. Nevada
  4. Manitoba
  5. Western Australia
  6. Quebec
  7. Wyoming
  8. Newfoundland and Labrador
  9. Yukon
  10. Alaska




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