Several of the biggest gold producers in the world have a staked a claim on Yukon’s mineral wealth
People in Yukon’s mining industry are optimistic about the future after increased spending and other developments over the past year. Companies spent about $90 million on mineral exploration in the territory in 2017, according to Scott Casselman, the territorial government’s head of mineral services. That’s up 57 per cent from 2016, he said.
Spending on mines in the development stage was $68 million — mostly at Victoria Gold’s Eagle Gold mine north of Mayo — up from $8 million in 2016. Casselman said as of early November, placer miners had reported production of 67,000 ounces of gold, worth $87 million.
Majors bring cash and stability
“You know, I think in general it’s nice to see we’ve stopped that downward slide over the last few years. We’ve started the uptick, and hopefully we can continue on with that,” said Casselman. “It’s attributable primarily to the interest of the major mining companies that have come into the territory, over this year and last.”
The trend began in 2016 with Goldcorp buying Kaminak’s Coffee property south of Dawson City. Other major producers followed, including Agnico Eagle Mines in late 2016, and Newmont Mining and Barrick Gold in 2017.
Kinross is also showing renewed interest in the territory. It’s among the biggest gold producers in the world, and its interest in the territory attracts other mining companies as well as cash and stability, said Casselman.
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