According to the Saskatchewan Mining Association, the province currently has more than 25 operating mines producing minerals such as potash, uranium, coal and gold. During the next two decades, mining companies in Saskatchewan will invest more than $50 billion in new projects. To ensure the continued success of the mining sector and its contribution to the economic growth of the province, the Ministry of Energy and Resources has taken several steps to encourage further investment. Energy and Resources Minister Bill Boyd was recently questioned about the Ministry’s endeavours.
Q: In last 4½ years, how has your ministry encouraged investment in Saskatchewan’s mining sector?
A: The ministry has been very active in promoting our rich and diverse mineral resources and encouraging investment in our mineral sector.
Key aspects include: the provision of high quality geoscience information; meeting regularly with companies that are active or interested in becoming active in Saskatchewan’s mineral sector; and participation in national and international conferences and mineral investment attraction missions in partnership with other government agencies such as Enterprise Saskatchewan.
Geoscience information is the key foundation to profiling Saskatchewan’s rich and diverse mineral sector and facilitating exploration activity. The ministry continuously receives very positive feedback from industry about our high quality, easily accessible geoscience information.
Our participation in national and international mineral explorationfocussed conferences and trade shows is another key component in our strategy to grow Saskatchewan’s mineral sector. These events help promote and educate thousands of investors about Saskatchewan’s resources and investment opportunities. In late November, Saskatchewan Energy and Resources hosts the Saskatchewan Geological Survey Open House in Saskatoon. This is the premier annual minerals geoscience conference in Saskatchewan. Each January, we participate in Mineral Exploration Roundup held in Vancouver, and every March we participate in the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) International Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange (PDAC) in Toronto. PDAC is the world’s largest mineral exploration and development show.
We are also very active in promoting our resources internationally. In the past six years alone, we have organized missions to China, Japan, Korea and Australia. We have a Saskatchewan booth each year at the China Mining Conference in Tianjin, China and generally make several presentations there profiling our mineral sector.
This activity – together with regular meetings with key government ministries, state-owned enterprises and industry – has helped build global awareness that Saskatchewan is a major producer of the commodities the world needs.
As part of these trips, we also work with other Canadian provinces, holding investor forums where we help highlight many of our junior exploration companies and connect them with potential investors.
Many companies and international delegations that we have met with on these trips follow up by visiting Saskatchewan to work with government officials to learn more about the province and often make significant investments in our resources.
Q: What tactics for encouraging investment have been the most successful?
A: Our national and international activities have yielded very positive results, including new investments from both Canadian and international companies.
In potash alone, we now have companies from Canada, Germany, Australia, Brazil, China, Mongolia and India expressing interest and conducting exploration programs that could lead to the development of new mines. We’ve seen a $623 million acquisition of Hathor Resources by Anglo/Australian mining giant Rio Tinto as well as a $260 million transaction for 19 potash permits by China’s Yancoal Canada Resources Company. This means billions of dollars of potential new investments, and thousands of jobs for Saskatchewan residents.
Q: How has the ministry partnered or worked with the Saskatchewan Mining Association and others in the mining industry to attract investment?
For the rest of this article, please go to the Regina Leader-Post website: http://www.leaderpost.com/technology/with+Saskatchewan+Energy+Resources+Minister+Bill+Boyd/6648186/story.html