THUNDER BAY – The Ontario government is proud that the Ring of Fire office is now officially open in Thunder Bay. The Ring of Fire represents a great opportunity for Ontario, with potential to become one of the world’s largest discoveries of chromite and the only one in North America. This new office will help promote economic opportunities and help facilitate the successful development of the Ring of Fire.
New figures from the Mining Association of Canada today estimate that approximately $130 billion worth of investment is projected over the next five years for the Canadian mining industry; including both new project and expansions to existing operations. That message was part of an address to the Sudbury Chamber of Commerce made by Pierre Gratton, President and CEO of the Mining Association of Canada.
The Ring of Fire is centered at McFaulds Lake, about 535 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, and covers about 4,000 square kilometres, roughly the size of Prince Edward Island. Currently there are approximately 25,000 claim units held by about 35 companies exploring in the Ring of Fire for chromite, nickel, copper, platinum, zinc, gold and diamonds.
“Multi-billion dollar investments are planned in virtually every province and territory of Canada. Global demand for commodities is creating opportunities not seen since the post-war boom of the 1950’s,” says Gratton. “As a global mining superpower, Canada is well positioned to capitalize on this opportunity. Canada is fortunate to have a rich endowment of commodities and over the past several decades we’ve developed best-in-class expertise in extracting materials in an environmentally responsible manner.”
“This is one of the most promising mineral development opportunities in Ontario in more than a century. All aspects of development of the Ring of Fire will require careful co-ordination and planning over the long term. I’m delighted that Director Harvey Yesno and his staff are located in Northern Ontario for the convenience of all involved parties,” Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry.
Joining Pierre Gratton in addressing the Sudbury audience was Chris Hodgson, President of the Ontario Mining Association. “The world needs the products of mining. Mines will be built and operated. What better place to mine than Ontario, with its responsible environmental protection, world class safety record and desire to participate in new and emerging technologies,” added Mr. Hodgson. “The existing 20-year window of opportunity can be spent on permitting and approvals, or it can be spent opening mines. Our environmental and safety record will not be placed in jeopardy by compressing development timelines and aligning interests to ensure the province, industry and community all benefit.”
“Canada is among the most attractive jurisdictions in the world for mineral exploration and new mine investment,” says Gratton. “We have a tremendous opportunity ahead of us; we need to think strategically about how best to seize it by focusing on key challenges like regulatory efficiency, human resources and infrastructure. Sudbury, with its richly diversified mining cluster, is well-positioned to capitalize on this opportunity not only for the commodities it produces, but as a Canadian supply and services centre and a key educator and trainer for the next generation of mine workers.”