A fully-integrated mining industry has given Canada a global “competitive edge,” said the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in a report released Jan. 30.
The report entitled: Mining Capital: How Canada Transformed Its Resources Endowment Into a Global Competitive Advantage, details how Canadian mining companies have provided the leverage for finance, insurance, specialty manufacturing and other related industries to succeed in highly competitive sectors.
The report points out that Toronto is the global capital of mining finance, British Columbia has the largest concentration of mining exploration firms in the world and Sudbury has a century of history as a mining centre and more than a dozen mines operating within the city limits.
“We have leveraged our metal and mineral endowment not just by extracting and processing raw material but also by creating and selling the knowledge of how to develop these resources. What we need now is to ensure that the factors that made us the global leader of the sector are strengthened,” said Perrin Beatty, president and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
Beatty said one of the dark clouds on the horizon for the mining sector is the growing skills crisis that is becoming a significant constraint on the industry. The Canadian Chamber also argues that governments are critical to the mining industry’s success. New investments in both physical and intangible infrastructure are needed to exploit our resource endowments.
Employing more than 320,000 Canadians, the core mining industries contributed $36.2 billion to Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2011. Mining exports in 2011 reached $102 billion (over a fifth of our nation’s total exports).