Min­ing key to sus­tain­able fu­ture — Cana­dian of­fi­cial

The Philippine Star - - BUSINESS - By LOUISE MAU­REEN SIMEON

TORONTO, Canada — Min­eral ex­plo­ration re­mains a crit­i­cal fac­tor in se­cur­ing a sus­tain­able fu­ture re­gard­less of the chal­lenges the global in­dus­try is fac­ing.

While the Philip­pine min­ing sec­tor has yet to re­al­ize its full po­ten­tial given chang­ing pol­icy direc­tions, Canada Min­is­ter of Nat­u­ral Re­sources Par­lia­men­tary Sec­re­tary Kim Rudd said gov­ern­ments’ vi­sion, specif­i­cally Canada, should fo­cus on the goal that econ­omy and en­vi­ron­ment go hand in hand.

“Our gov­ern­ment re­al­izes that we also have a cen­tral role to play to at­tract in­vest­ments and ad­vance sus­tain­able re­source de­vel­op­ment to cre­ate new jobs and real op­por­tu­ni­ties,” Rudd said dur­ing the open­ing cer­e­mony of the Prospec­tors & De­vel­op­ers As­so­ci­a­tion of Canada Con­ven­tion (PDAC).

Sev­eral coun­tries, in­clud­ing the Philip­pines, are look­ing at adopt­ing Cana­dian prac­tices, which have been glob­ally rec­og­nized for its stan­dards as the bench­mark to en­sure re­spon­si­ble min­ing prac­tices.

Min­ing, as a whole, is a glob­ally sig­nif­i­cant in­dus­try that in­cludes over 6,000 com­pa­nies and di­rectly em­ploys 2.5 mil­lion peo­ple across the globe.

Canada’s min­ing in­dus­try ac­counts for al­most 20 per­cent of the coun­try’s to­tal ex­port vol­ume and is one of its largest out­ward in­vest­ing sec­tors.

“We want to en­sure that min­ing re­mains a driver of Cana­dian pros­per­ity. Our gov­ern­ment con­tin­ues to make in­vest­ments in clean tech­nol­ogy and mod­ern in­fra­struc­ture, all the while pro­mot­ing a com­pet­i­tive tax regime,” Rudd said.

In fact, Canada is tak­ing un­prece­dented ac­tions to main­tain its global com­pet­i­tive­ness and con­tinue to es­tab­lish its place in the world as the undis­puted leader in sus­tain­able min­eral re­source de­vel­op­ment.

“We have a new ap­proach that rep­re­sents a gen­er­a­tional turn­ing point to strengthen in­vestors’ cer­tainty, strong pub­lic trust, ad­vanc­ing in­dige­nous rec­on­cil­i­a­tion and en­vi­ron­ment stew­ard­ship,” Rudd said.

The Cana­dian gov­ern­ment is also look­ing at a new le­gal frame­work that will rec­og­nize in­dige­nous rights to change Canada’s re­la­tion­ship with in­dige­nous peo­ple by im­ple­ment­ing their in­her­ent rights.

On a global per­spec­tive, Brazil­ian min­ing com­pany Nexa Re­sources said the fu­ture of the in­dus­try greatly de­pends on how each min­ing in­sti­tu­tion shows what and how they do things.

“There is prob­a­bly some­thing wrong about how we are be­hav­ing. In the last decade, the in­dus­try suf­fered sig­nif­i­cant changes that di­rectly im­pacted the way min­ing com­pa­nies do busi­ness,” Nexa Re­sources CEO Tito Martins said dur­ing a tech­ni­cal pro­gram on com­modi­ties and mar­ket out­look in PDAC.

“Fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions are look­ing at us, the gov­ern­ments are ask­ing for more, and in­vestors want to make sure that we are work­ing prop­erly where we op­er­ate,” he said.

Martins em­pha­sized that the sec­tor lacks good com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills, thus re­sult­ing in a neg­a­tive per­cep­tion from the in­dus­try.

“Those who are com­plain­ing about min­ing are the ones hold­ing their phones, they don’t un­der­stand that ev­ery­thing that they have, comes from us,” Martins said.

“Min­ing is and will con­tinue to be es­sen­tial for life that is why there is a need to com­mu­ni­cate with so­ci­ety on how es­sen­tial min­ing is for mod­ern liv­ing,” he added.

Philex Min­ing Corp. pres­i­dent and CEO Eu­lalio Austin Jr. is join­ing the global meet­ing on the To­wards Sus­tain­able Min­ing (TSM) ini­tia­tive of the Min­ing As­so­ci­a­tion of Canada here.

PDAC, the world’s pre­mier min­eral ex­plo­ration and min­ing event, is mark­ing its 86th year with more than 24,000 at­ten­dees from 130 coun­tries.

It is the largest in­dus­try event that pro­vides min­eral and min­ing pro­fes­sion­als, in­vestors, an­a­lysts, ge­ol­o­gists, ex­ec­u­tives, gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials and stu­dents, ac­cess to an ar­ray of pro­gram­ming, short cour­ses, pre­sen­ta­tions and net­work­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties.

PDAC aims to pro­mote a glob­ally-re­spon­si­ble, vi­brant and sus­tain­able min­er­als in­dus­try. It en­cour­ages the best prac­tices in tech­ni­cal, op­er­a­tional, en­vi­ron­men­tal, safety and so­cial per­for­mance.

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