Ottawa considering equity stakes, advancing loans to critical minerals companies – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – March 10, 2023)

The federal government is considering taking equity stakes and advancing loans to Canadian critical minerals companies, as it mulls following Quebec’s lead in moving to a much more active role in Canada’s industrial policy.

Federal Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said in an interview earlier this week at the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) mining conference in Toronto that the equity stakes could come through the soon-to-be-launched Canada Growth Fund, and loans could be arranged through the Canada Infrastructure Bank.

“We’re certainly talking about this in the context of the run-up to the budget,” said Mr. Wilkinson. “Which is what will Canada need to do to ensure that its mineral and minerals processing sectors are competitive.”

Until now, federal government investments in the critical minerals supply chain have mostly been grants to large foreign-owned automakers and mining companies.

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