NEWS RELEASE: Saskatchewan 3rd most attractive jurisdiction worldwide for mining investment, Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador also in global top 10 (Fraser Institute – February 25, 2021)

CALGARY—Saskatchewan remains Canada’s most attractive jurisdiction for mining investment, finds the Annual Survey of Mining Companies released today by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank.

“The Fraser Institute’s mining survey is the most comprehensive report on government policies that either attract or discourage mining investors,” said Elmira Aliakbari, director of the Fraser Institute’s Centre for Natural Resource Studies and co-author of the report.

This year’s report ranks 77 jurisdictions around the world based on their geologic attractiveness (minerals and metals) and government policies that encourage or deter exploration and investment.

Again, on the report’s Overall Investment Attractiveness Index, Saskatchewan remains the top-rated Canadian jurisdiction (3rd up from 11th last year) followed by Quebec (6th up from 18th) and Newfoundland and Labrador (8th up from 28th).

However, Quebec’s strong performance in overall investment attractiveness is due largely to the province’s mineral potential. On government policy alone, Quebec ranks 17th, which suggests there’s plenty of room for improvement.

British Columbia and Ontario (two large mining provinces) also perform poorly on the policy front due to investor concerns about disputed land claims and protected areas.

“A sound and predictable regulatory regime coupled with competitive fiscal policies help make a jurisdiction attractive in the eyes of mining investors,” said Jairo Yunis, Fraser Institute policy analyst and report co-author.

“Policymakers in every province and territory should understand that mineral deposits alone are not enough to attract precious investment dollars,” Aliakbari said.

Overall investment attractiveness for Canadian provinces and territories (out of 77)

3) Saskatchewan
6) Quebec
8) Newfoundland and Labrador
17) British Columbia
18) Yukon
20) Ontario

22) Alberta
32) New Brunswick
37) Manitoba
39) Nunavut
46) Northwest Territories
66) Nova Scotia


Elmira Aliakbari, Director, Centre for Natural Resource Studies, Fraser Institute

Jairo Yunis, Policy Analyst, Fraser Institute

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Mark Hasiuk, Senior Media Relations Specialist, Fraser Institute, 604-688-0221 ext. 517,

The Fraser Institute is an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of think-tanks in 87 countries. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for Canadians, their families and future generations by studying, measuring and broadly communicating the effects of government policies, entrepreneurship and choice on their well-being. To protect the Institute’s independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research.