Fraser Institute says Canada ‘taking longer’ to give exploration permits

A new study on mining and investment by the Fraser Institute claims investors are losing confidence in the permitting process for mineral exploration in many Canadian provinces.

The Canadian think tank says applications “are taking longer to be approved” than they were ten years ago and that the process has also become less transparent.

Fifty percent of the respondents surveyed said the lack of transparency in Ontario deters investment, while 48% of respondents said the same of B.C. and 40% about Quebec.

By comparison, 17% of those surveyed said lack of transparency deterred investment in Finland and just 9% said it did so in Sweden and Western Australia.

Kenneth Green, a co-author of the study argues that “an increasingly opaque and confusing application process for companies to explore for mineral deposits deters investments and ultimately hinders Canada’s ability to realize its considerable resource potential.”

“Ultimately, uncompetitive mining policies send valuable investment dollars — and the jobs and prosperity they create — elsewhere,” Green said.

Co-author Ashley Stedman added that attracting scarce investment dollars “requires sound, clear policies and predictable timelines, and investors have said loud and clear that Canada is lagging on this front.”

The study, Permit Times for Mining Exploration in 2017, was based on a survey of mining executives and examined their perceptions of the permitting process including wait times for approvals and regulations.



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