By Lindsay Kislock
Originally Published in Business in Vancouver
In January 2019, the Provincial government released the Mining Jobs Task Force Report outlining twenty-four recommendations which begin to address key the competitiveness challenges facing BC's mining industry – five of these are already being put into action. This was followed last week by the Federal government’s release of the Canadian Minerals and Metals Plan which sets out our national strategic vision for Canada’s mining sector as a global leader. Both reports reflect the recognition by our Provincial and Federal governments of the important contribution that mining continues to make to the economic and social well-being of all of our communities. They also rightly recognize the important role mining plays in providing jobs and prosperity for Indigenous peoples and communities.
The Mining Association of BC is pleased to see this recognition and is urging governments, Indigenous nations, industry and communities to come together to take action quickly. Today’s investments build the mines that will support our future. Waiting to realize this vision risks the long term future of our sector. Simply put, action is needed now.
BC’s metals, minerals and smelting operations are the foundation for our future, and are providing the essential components needed for the advancements in technology, communications and energy efficacy that will lower our collective global carbon footprint.
However, mining is a highly competitive industry and its products are traded globally. Tax and regulatory conditions materially impact jurisdictional investment. Furthermore, the volatility in global commodity markets persists which poses some significant competitiveness challenges for mining operations in BC, compared to other mining jurisdictions. If the competitiveness of the BC natural resource sector is not addressed in earnest, it will impact jobs and economic growth in communities throughout our province.
In order to position the province, and the country, as a global leader in the responsible development of the materials required for our lower carbon future, BC requires a competitiveness-focus to ensure clarity, consistency and coordination in our province’s regulatory and fiscal framework.
By working together we can address these challenges and unlock this crucial opportunity, ensuring that B.C. has a growing, sustainable and inclusive industry that is globally competitive - for the benefit of all British Columbians, today and for generations to come.
Now is the time to act. Together we can create shared prosperity and establish our province and country as a leader for a future that all British Columbians can be proud of.