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VANCOUVER, BC – The Government of British Columbia today announced the consultation and engagement process for modernizing BC’s Mineral Tenure Act (MTA) following the September 2023 BC Supreme Court decision which found the Crown owes a constitutional duty to consult First Nations prior to issuing mineral claims under the MTA.

The Province announced it will co-develop changes to the mineral tenure regime  through a government-to-government process with the First Nations Leadership Council while also conducting a broad engagement process with industry, local governments, and other interested British Columbians.

Michael Goehring, President and CEO of the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) made the following statement in response to this announcement:

“MABC looks forward to engaging with the Province on adjusting the mineral tenure registration process to comply with the Supreme Court of British Columbia’s decision in Gitxaala v. British Columbia (Chief Gold Commissioner) that First Nations must be consulted prior to the issuance of mineral claims. The decision found this can be accommodated within the existing law or through legislative amendments, noting the current MTA remains operable over the 18-months the Court provided to complete this work.

MABC and our members strongly support a modernized MTA that fulfills the Crown’s duty to consult First Nations, maintains investor confidence in BC, and advances economic reconciliation, First Nations partnerships, and shared prosperity through the development of BC’s critical mineral resources.

A viable and growing mining and critical mineral industry depends on a viable and growing exploration industry that maintains investor confidence. It’s critically important that adjustments to the MTA are incremental, respect existing mineral tenure holders’ rights, and maintain certainty.

We are pleased the Province is committing to a public engagement framework to seek input from BC’s exploration and mining industry and other stakeholders. We have been concerned about the level of stakeholder consultation associated with government-to-government negotiations to date. Open, transparent, and timely engagement that includes BC’s exploration and mining industry is imperative.”

About the Mining Association of British Columbia

MABC is the voice of British Columbia’s steelmaking coal, metal and mineral producers, smelters and advanced development companies. Our industry benefits all British Columbians and supports more than 35,000 jobs and over 3,900 small, medium and indigenous affiliated businesses in every corner of the province through an annual spend of $3.7 billion on goods and services. Our members’ products have among the lowest carbon footprints globally and are helping the world transition to a cleaner, low-carbon future; safely and responsibly.

For more information

Jayne Czarnocki
Director, Communications
Mining Association of British Columbia
Cell: 778-957-2597

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