Canada, committed to developing as a knowledge and technology supplier to the world and
currently one of the world’s leading mining jurisdictions, lacks a comprehensive strategy to
make mining and the mineral sector a key component of its continued growth on the world
Canada is one of the largest producers of minerals and metals in the world, with the overall
value of Canadian mineral production totaling $40.4 billion in 2007. Canada ranked first in the world for the production of potash and uranium, and ranks in the top five for the production of nickel, asbestos, zinc, cadmium, titanium concentrate, aluminium, platinum group metals, salt, molybdenum, gypsum, cobalt and diamonds.
The mining industry continues to be a strong contributor to the Canadian economy, despite
significant growth in other sectors. In 2006, the mineral industry contributed $40 billion to
Canada’s total GDP, or 4.0% of Canada’s total GDP. Services related to mining contributed an additional $4.55 billion.
Canada is one of the world’s largest exporters of minerals and metals. The Canadian mining
industry exported $72 billion worth of metals, non-metals and coal in 2006. This represented 16% of Canada’s total goods exports of $440 billion in 2006. The export of these commodities and more refined mineral products has a significant impact on Canada’s overall merchandise balance of trade, and hence on the national standard of living. Canada’s mining cluster is responsible for over 28% of Canadian foreign direct investment abroad by Canada’s goods-producing sector.
The mining and mineral processing industries directly employed 369,000 Canadians in 2006, which represented slightly more than one in every 45 employed Canadians. Average weekly earnings in the mining industry in 2006 were over $1,108, one of the highest levels of any industry in the Canadian economy. For every job created in the mining industry, more than one other job is indirectly created in the Canadian economy.
At the beginning of 2007, there were 801 mining establishments in Canada. Ontario is the
leading province in mineral production with 28% of Canada’s total value, followed by British
Columbia, Quebec and Saskatchewan at 17%, 14%, and 11% respectively.
Canada is second only to Australia as the preferred global country destination for mineral
exploration investment. In 2006, exploration spending accounted for $1.37 billion. More than 1,100 Canadian-based exploration and mining companies account for over 45% of the world’s mineral exploration.
In 2005, about $504 million was spent by industry on research and development in the mining and mineral processing industries. Mining sector research and development investment in 2005 exceeded that of the crude oil and natural gas sector, the motor vehicle parts and accessories sector, paper manufacturing, machinery, and the electronics parts and components industries.
That the federal government:
1. Make a firm public commitment to making Canada the world’s leading jurisdiction in
innovation, technology and knowledge production related to the discovery, production, and
use of metals by developing focused centres for mining research and education excellence
where capacity exists and by concentrating federal resources including education and
innovation funding at these sites.
2. Commit to fully exploiting the potential of Canada’s mineral resources by including the
mining supply, service sector, and downstream value-added enterprises in the federal
SUBMITTED BY THE GREATER SUDBURY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
THE ECONOMIC POLICY COMMITTEE SUPPORTS THIS RESOLUTION