Manitoba needs to up its mining game – by Joseph Quesnel (Winnipeg Sun – July 9, 2021)

Joseph Quesnel is a senior research associate with the Frontier Centre for Public Policy.

There is some good news for mining in Manitoba, but the province needs to reform its mining policies for the sector to thrive. Despite some progress over the years, this province still has a hostile climate for investment and this needs to change.

Vale recently announced it is making a $150 million investment to extend current nickel mining activities in Thompson, Man., by a decade. At the same time, the company will be engaging in some aggressive exploration drilling of known ore bodies to extend the life of the mine even further.

This is good news because a few years ago, the mining operation in Northern Manitoba was set to shut down. This announcement provides a welcome injection of new capital into northern Manitoba.

The promising thing is that nickel is all the rage today because of its critical role in electric vehicles and renewable energies. Manitoba is well-positioned since the quality of nickel produced in this province is top notch so, the ingredients for success are all there.

In fact, it is the perfect time for Manitoba to reform its mining policies as Canada moves ahead on carbon dioxide reduction targets that will include promoting increased use of electric cars which run on batteries made from minerals that can be mined right here.

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