The Canadian mining industry is facing deep-rooted structural problems, with no easy solutions in sight. That’s according to a well-known Canadian mining executive, who spoke on the opening day of the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention on Monday.
In an unscripted and candid keynote speech, Sean Roosen, chief executive of Osisko Gold Royalties Ltd., bemoaned the lack of investor interest in mining, the dearth of investment over the past few years in exploration projects, skyrocketing capital costs and, in particular, the rapid-fire rise of alternative sectors, such as bitcoin and marijuana, that has wooed investors away from the industry.
“People used to invest in prospectors and exploration because they wanted to take risks and they wanted to have fun,” Mr. Roosen said.
“That money has now moved over to cryptocurrency and weed stocks.” said Mr. Roosen. Mr. Roosen also noted that marijuana companies have gobbled up much of the speculative equity capital that has been raised in Canada over the past few years.
“Weed stocks kind of ate our lunch,” Mr. Roosen said. “Now, we have to figure out how to plant marijuana on our exploration projects,” he quipped.
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