COLUMN-The best places to mine are still in the developed world, and that’s a problem – by Clyde Russell (Reuters U.S. – March 5, 2020)

LAUNCESTON, Australia, March 5 (Reuters) – The latest list of the top places to invest in mining is dominated by developed countries with long histories of success in the industry, but this probably isn’t a good thing.

The Fraser Institute’s annual survey of mining companies ranked Western Australia state as the most attractive jurisdiction for investment, as it moves up from the number two spot previously, replacing the U.S. state of Nevada, which slipped to third spot.

The 2019 survey, released on Feb. 25, placed Finland in second spot, Alaska in fourth and Portugal in fifth.

Perhaps the biggest surprise in the survey of global mining executives is the poor performance of Canadian provinces, with not one managing a top 10 spot, with Saskatchewan coming in 11th, Ontario 16th, Quebec 18th and British Colombia 19th. In the previous survey Canada had four of its provinces in the top 10.

Canada has traditionally been a powerhouse in terms of mining attractiveness, and its weakness in the latest survey was attributed to rising concern about environmental regulation and risks over land claims and title issues.

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