Liberals ‘out of touch’ [Northern Ontario and mining sector] PC leader says in Sudbury – by Harold Carmichael (Sudbury Star – May 29, 2015)

The Sudbury Star is the City of Greater Sudbury’s daily newspaper.

The Liberals are “out of touch” with Northern Ontario and the mining sector, and that’s why little progress has been made developing the Ring of Fire, Ontario’s new PC leader says.

In an interview with The Star, Patrick Brown referred to a statement made a few years ago by former Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty that Ontario “must stop pulling stuff out of the ground” if it wanted to create new wealth and jobs.

“That shows how out of touch the Liberals are and their comprehension of the mining sector,” said Brown during a visit to Greater Sudbury on Thursday. “This is a $60-billion opportunity.

“Northern Ontario could be an economic driver for the entire country. And the NDP, they have gone along with their (Liberal) policies when it comes to mining and forestry.”

The so-called Ring of Fire is a mineral-rich find in northwestern Ontario containing chromite, nickel, copper and other minerals. At one point, Cliffs Natural Resources planned to ship chromite from a mine in the Ring of Fire to a plant in Capreol. Those plans have since been cancelled and Cliffs has withdrawn from the Ring of Fire.

Brown’s visit to Greater Sudbury was part of a three-city swing through the northeast Wednesday and Thursday that included stops in Espanola and Timmins, where Brown visited the Canadian Mining Expo.

The visit to Greater Sudbury was Brown’s second since becoming leader of the Ontario Progressive Party on May 9 and 12th in the last year.

Brown, 37, had been a Conservative MP for Barrie since 2006.

Brown, who spoke about the Ring of Fire at the Canadian Mining Expo, said the mining camp is important to the North right now and his party shares that viewpoint, but the Liberals and NDP are both wearing “Toronto lenses” when it comes to the issues the North is facing.

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