Budget Lift for Ministry of Energy and Mines and Flow-Through Tax Credit Welcome
Victoria, BC — February 17, 2015 —Today, the Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia (AME BC) expressed support for the 2015/2016 BC budget delivered by Finance Minister Michael de Jong. “We thank the provincial government for maintaining a balanced budget overall while meeting its commitment to increase funding for the Mines and Mineral Resources Division of the Ministry of Energy and Mines,” says David McLelland, Chair of AME BC. “We believe that this important budget lift will be a strong catalyst to increase public and investor confidence in the mineral exploration and development sector, particularly now and when the minerals cycle enters its next upswing.”
As announced by Premier Christy Clark on January 26 at AME BC’s Mineral Exploration Roundup 2015 conference, the provincial government has committed to increasing base funding of the Mines and Mineral Resources Division by $6.3 million to $17.1 million as well as an extension of the $10 million BC mining flow-through share tax credit through December 31, 2015. Further to Premier Clark’s announcement, mineral exploration will be exempt from permitting fees.
“The BC government has demonstrated that it has considered many of the concerns raised by mineral explorers and developers in AME BC’s annual Policy Issues & Recommendations paper,” says Gavin C. Dirom, President & CEO of AME BC. “The government has also developed an approach to issuing mineral exploration permits in a more timely manner that includes consultation with First Nations, and enables responsible mineral exploration to advance. Since 2001, BC’s share of all mineral exploration expenditures across Canada has increased from 6 per cent to 21 per cent, and we are hopeful that today’s announcement will support this trend and lead to potential new discoveries and future development that will benefit communities in all regions of the province.”
Although more funding for the BC Geological Survey and Geoscience BC was not specifically announced today, the government’s commitment to public geoscience was further demonstrated in January through the posting of new positions for senior minerals geologists specializing in copper and gold metallogeny.
“We are thankful to government for increasing the capacity of the Mines and Mineral Resources Division, and we also note that British Columbia is a world leader in the creation and distribution of public geoscience information,” says McLelland. “Accordingly, we look forward to the provincial government’s continued release of technical information that builds understanding and confidence in mineral exploration and development, leads to more informed land use decisions and improves geotechnical and geohazard assessment in British Columbia.”
About AME BC:
AME BC is the lead association for the mineral exploration and development industry based in British Columbia. Established in 1912, AME BC represents, advocates, protects and promotes the interests of thousands of members who are engaged in mineral exploration and development in BC and throughout the world. AME BC encourages a safe, economically strong and environmentally responsible industry by providing clear initiatives, policies, events and tools to support its membership.
For further information, please contact Jonathan Buchanan, Director, Communications & Public Affairs, AME BC, at 778.840.0620 or [email protected]