Wanted: 100,000 mining workers in next decade – by Derek Sankey (Vancouver Sun – March 13, 2012)

The Vancouver Sun, a broadsheet daily paper first published in 1912, has the largest circulation in the province of British Columbia.

Canada’s mining sector is entering a period of “significant and sustained growth,” according to a recent report from the Mining Association of Canada (MAC), which will translate into the need to hire more than 100,000 additional workers in the next decade.

“Mining in Canada is playing a leading role in Canada’s economic recovery,” says Pierre Gratton, president and chief executive of MAC. “We are generating significant results, we are creating valuable new jobs and we are optimistic about the opportunities in the future.”

The association estimates that Canada’s mining industry plans to invest a further $139-billion in new projects nationwide in the next 10 years. “Working responsibly and co-operatively, we believe mining will be a good news story for Canada for years to come,” Gratton says.

Demand for commodities in countries such as China and India are driving part of the overall appetite for investment in Canada’s mining industry. “Global demand for commodities is creating opportunities not seen since the post-war boom of the 1950s,” Gratton says. “In the past several decades, we’ve developed best-in-class expertise in extracting materials in an environmentally responsible manner.”

Among the top-paying and most highly sought-after workers are geologists and other highly skilled geosciences professionals, but the need for more talent is being felt at every level of the industry.

It covers mineral extraction, smelting, fabrication and manufacturing, among other areas. In addition to the mining firms there are 3,215 companies supply engineering, geotechnical, environmental, financial and other services to mining operations.

From coast to coast, mining is enjoying a period of growth and expansion not seen in decades — a trend that’s mirrored globally as Canadian companies explore new projects in this country and abroad.

In the next five years alone, MAC predicts the creation of thousands of high-paying jobs in every region. Facing a labour shortage, MAC and other industry organizations are working with governments and training institutions to address the shortfall and to train the next generation of workers.

The sector is the largest private employer of aboriginal Canadians, a fact not lost on the industry, which is increasingly recognizing this population for its “important role in land and resources management,” the mining group says.
For the rest of this article, please go to the Vancouver Sun website: http://www.vancouversun.com/technology/Wanted+mining+workers+next+decade/6293867/story.html

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