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Supporting Indigenous


MABC fully supports provincial government efforts through the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (Declaration Act) and other work to encourage economic reconciliation with Indigenous groups in British Columbia.

BC’s mining industry has a long history of advancing economic reconciliation with Indigenous Nations, including:

Indigenous communities share in the benefits of mining through numerous Impact Benefit Agreements that reflect UNDRIP principles.

Indigenous nations also share directly in mineral tax revenue from mines operating within their traditional territories, a policy that started in BC. Forty-six nations have received a total of $98 million in payments to date.

BC mining is a major partner with Indigenous businesses, purchasing $265 million in goods and services from 120 Indigenous-affiliated suppliers in 2018.

The first consent-based agreement between the provincial government and the Tahltan Central Government on the Eskay Creek project has the potential to advance a major mine and create new opportunities for the Tahltan Nation.

Indigenous Governance

MABC believes governments have a duty to assist Indigenous governing bodies to build the governance capacity and expertise they require to participate in government-to-government processes and shared decision-making on an equal footing, while improving the certainty and timeliness of the natural resource development process.

This would enable greater clarity on the expectations for free, prior and informed consent in permitting and authorizations processes through various stages of review, draft permit condition development, and final decision-making.

Administrative Capacity Building

The scope of work for Indigenous Nations is significant for a single project, let alone multiple referrals on numerous projects. There is an acute need for the provincial and federal governments to assist Indigenous Nations to build administrative and technical capabilities. MABC recommends governments establish – with the full consent and authority of Indigenous nations – a shared services organization governed and led by Indigenous Nations.

Enabling Equity Project Participation in Major Mines

Indigenous Nations and mines have signed agreements and developed strategic partnerships for decades. There is greater opportunity for partnerships, up to and including obtaining an equity stake in projects. We urge the provincial and federal governments to create programs to facilitate greater Indigenous equity participation in advanced development projects and operating.

Enhancing Revenue Sharing under Economic and Community Development Agreements (ECDAs)

Many Nations have ECDAs in place with the provincial government to receive a share of mineral resource revenues. MABC recommends the percentage received by Nations from the province be increased.