The Government of Nunavut has decided its fuel tax rebate program is too generous. That’s why the GN plans to tighten the purse strings when it comes to mining companies doing work in the territory.
The fuel rebate program, in place since 2006, gives mining companies, and others, a break on the amount they are obliged to pay in fuel tax — one of the few homegrown revenue streams available to the government for investment in much-needed territorial infrastructure.
In order to be eligible for the rebate, a company or individual must be involved in harvesting, outfitting, quarrying for carving stone, mineral exploration or mining development, extraction or reclamation.
The Department of Economic Development and Transportation and Department of Finance have decided that they will still allow mining companies to get a fuel tax rebate during the exploration and development stage of their projects, but once they build an operating mine, this rebate would disappear.
This news came to light March 3 in the Nunavut Legislature, when Tununiq MLA Joe Enook asked Economic Development Minister Monica Ell-Kanayuk for details on current development partnership agreements between the GN and mining companies.
Development Partnership Agreements, which detail what Nunavut gets out of the deal, such as jobs and investment, must be signed before a company can qualify for the tax rebate.
“Currently we have only one development partnership agreement and that is the Agnico Eagle Meadowbank mine agreement,” Ell-Kanayuk told Enook, according to the Hansard transcript of the day’s exchange.
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