Mining permit waits hamper Canadian development – by Ken Green (Troy Media – April 8, 2019)

Kenneth Green is a Fraser Institute analyst.

Every year, the Fraser Institute publishes a survey of senior mining company executives that assesses policy environments around the world and the mineral potential of jurisdictions. Those two components are used to create an investment attractiveness index.

One thing miners repeatedly tell us is that they’re concerned about obtaining exploration permits: how long does it take, how certain is the process, how transparent is the process, etc.

That’s why, for the last several years, the Fraser Institute has included a sub-survey examining permit times in Canada, Australia and the United States.

In the 2018 survey, 150 managers and executives (with 65 per cent from exploration companies) answered the permit-time component of the larger mining survey. These responses allowed eight Canadian jurisdictions to be assessed: Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.

Most exploration permits can be obtained within six months, but some provinces can take significantly longer. Twelve per cent of applicants in B.C., for example, waited 15 to 18 months to receive a permit to explore. In Nunavut, 12.5 per cent of applicants were also kept waiting for 15 to 18 months, as were 9.5 per cent of respondents from Yukon.

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