Guest opinion: Policy uncertainty remains major barrier to mining investment in Canada – by Jairo Yunis and Elmira Aliakbari (Calgary Herald – May 4, 2022)

Jairo Yunis and Elmira Aliakbari are analysts at the Fraser Institute.

The world is experiencing a shortage of the most important base metals (aluminum, copper, lithium, nickel, etc.) used to produce and manufacture a wide range of goods. Inventories are at multiyear lows and the International Monetary Fund’s Base Metals Price Index, which tracks the prices of these base metals, has gone up 21 per cent since November.

Why should you care? Because plans to decarbonize the world’s economy rely on an ample supply of base metals to produce batteries, electric vehicles, solar panels and wind turbines. As such, government policies are critically important in attracting much-needed investment to increase the production of metals and minerals to supply current and future demand.

In this context, the Fraser Institute’s annual mining survey tracks the perceptions of mining investors around the world to determine which jurisdictions are attractive — or unattractive — for investment based on government policies and geological potential.

The survey spotlights policies (taxes, duplicative regulations, availability of labour and skills, etc.) that impact investment decisions. The most attractive jurisdictions in the world match their mineral potential with a competitive policy environment and/or overcome a lack of mineral potential with solid policies.

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