The road to riches remains a rocky one for junior mining companies. Financing to do mineral exploration continues to be tight for those on the upstream end of the industry.
While money doesn’t appear to be an issue for larger, more advanced exploration plays, it’s the smaller projects at the grassroots stage that are being neglected, according to Garry Clark, executive director of the Ontario Prospectors Association (OPA) in Thunder Bay.
“If I had a project that could sustain a $5-million exploration project, I could raise it. But I would have difficulty raising something south of $1 million.” Commodity prices for base metals remain relatively healthy, but investor interest is veering away from the methodical and calculated risk of exploration mining stocks toward the fast buck and quick fix of the legalized marijuana sector.
A recent BDO report indicated Canadian cannabis stocks jumped from $43 million to $770 million from the first half of 2016 to the first half of 2017. For junior miners, financing tanked, falling 58 per cent for TSX and 23 per cent for TSXV-listed companies between 2017 and 2018.
Northern Superior Resources, a Sudbury gold explorer, landed an option agreement last November with Yamana Gold to develop its high-grade TPK gold-silver-copper property, west of the Ring of Fire.