Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference Federal-Provincial-Territorial Meeting of Mines Ministers


Canada ’s vast natural resources continue to play a vital role in shaping our   economy, our society and our place in the world. The future is particularly   bright for Canada’s mining sector.

Some highlights about mining in Canada

  • Exploration expenditures are forecast to reach a 20-year high in 2007 —   almost $2.5 billion.
  • Capital investment in mining and mineral processing in 2007 is expected to   reach $8 billion, an increase of almost 13 percent from the previous year.
  • Almost 40 percent of the global equity financing for mining companies is   raised in Canada. More than two-thirds of the world’s mining companies are   listed on stock exchanges here, including about 1,000 exploration firms. Canada   is “the hub” for mining activities worldwide.

In 2006, the value of Canadian mineral production totalled over $77 billion.   This figure includes the traditional value of production from Canadian-mined   ores, concentrates and aggregates. The balance includes the value of production   realized from the smelting and refining of domestic and imported ores and   concentrates; recyclables; steel; aluminum and coal and oil sands mining.

Canada ’s minerals and metals in the world

  • Canada is one of the largest mining nations in the world, producing more   than 60 minerals and metals.
  • Canada is one of the world’s leading exporters of minerals and mineral   products. These products accounted for over 17 percent of Canada’s total   domestic exports in 2006.
  • Mining and mineral processing contributed some $40 billion to Canada’s GDP   in 2006.
  • Preliminary numbers indicate that nickel was the top metallic mineral   produced in Canada in 2006 with shipments valued at $6 billion. Copper   production was next at over $4 billion. Canada continued to be the third-largest   producer of primary aluminum and diamonds.
  • By 2010, it’s expected that Canada will be responsible for 20 percent of the   world’s diamond production.

Employment in Canada due to mining and mineral processing

  • Total direct employment in 2006 was more than 369,000 jobs. About 49,000   people were employed in mining, 80,000 in smelting and refining, and 239,000 in   processing and manufacturing.
  • Mineral and metals products accounted for almost 50 percent of the volume   handled by Canada’s ports in 2004 and 60 percent of the country’s rail freight   traffic in 2005.
  • The mining sector provides some of Canada’s best jobs. Weekly earnings   average more than $1,000, compared to the Canadian economy average of just under   $750.

2006 Performance Statistics

The mining and minerals processing sector experienced a very robust economic   performance during the past year. Some highlights include:

  • The balance of trade for the mining and mineral processing industries   increased 60 percent from some $7 billion in 2005 to over $12 billion in 2006.
  • The value of mineral production increased 22.7 percent from $27 billion in   2005 to over $33 billion in 2006. Higher prices were a dominant factor in the   increased value of production.
  • Investment in mining in 2006 increased 39 percent to $16.1 billion. An   increase of nearly 30 percent to $20.6 billion is projected for 2007. Although   close to 80 percent of this spending is targeted to non-conventional oil   extraction (oil sands), investment in metal mining increased by almost 8 percent   in 2006 and gold and silver mining investment was up nearly 60 percent.
  • R&D expenditures increased 4 percent in mining and related industries   for a total of $538 million.

Most regions of Canada have benefited from the recent strong   performance of the mining and minerals processing sector. Examples include:

  • Strong 2005 to 2006 growth in spending on exploration and deposit appraisal   was experienced in Alberta (+140 percent), Newfoundland and Labrador (+100   percent), Saskatchewan (+75 percent), Yukon (+40 percent) British Columbia (+40   percent), Northwest Territories (+35 percent), New Brunswick (+27 percent) and   Quebec (+27 percent).
  • Increased 2007 capital investment spending intentions in the mining industry   affected Quebec (+83 percent), the three territories (+61 percent), and Ontario   (+25 percent).
  • Major increases in the total value of mineral production were felt in   Nunavut (+674 percent) mainly due to the opening of the Jericho diamond mine.   Other increases were experienced in Manitoba (+67 percent) and New Brunswick   (+64 percent).
  • In 2006, minerals accounted for 99 percent of total exports from the   Northwest Territories and some 80 percent of exports from the Yukon.

Mining is an important industry in Canada and it will continue to be a vital   part of our economy. The Government of Canada is working with provincial   counterparts to increase the benefits that the mining sector brings to Canadians   in communities in every province and territory.

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For more information, media may contact:

Alyson Robb
           Office of the Minister
           Natural   Resources Canada
           Jake Jacobs
           Public Affairs Officer
           British Columbia Ministry of   Energy
           Mines and Petroleum Resources
           Cell:   250-213-6934