Government, industry and stakeholders working together to showcase Yukon mining potential

Stacey Hassard, MLA for Pelly-NisutlinAs submitted to the Whitehorse Star on Friday, July 15, 2016
by Stacey Hassard, Minister of Economic Development

This week, our government co-hosted the annual Investment Forum and Property Tour with the Yukon Mining Alliance (YMA). This partnership between government and industry is recognized by global resource leaders as an enviable model for mining promotion. Now, more than ever, it is important to stand up for our resource industry and this government is ensuring that no one out-promotes Yukon as a great place to do business.

The tour has proven invaluable over the past several years. Other ministers, government staff and I have engaged with potential investors, resource media and local industry, as well as First Nation leaders and development corporations to discuss priorities for the mining industry and the future performance of the sector.

This year, we heard promising stories of mining’s emergence from the worldwide mineral downturn. Yukon supply and service businesses are seeing increased demand from clients and activity has picked up at the mining recorder’s office in Dawson. Investors are once again looking to Yukon as a great jurisdiction to invest in and to do business.

Just this past January, Kaminak Gold Corporation announced positive feasibility results from its exploration of the Coffee Gold Project, located south of Dawson City. Since then, the company has been acquired by Goldcorp Inc., one of the world’s largest producers of gold. Goldcorp’s confidence in Yukon has served notice throughout the mining industry that Yukon is ready for business and that we have done everything we can to prepare for the next upswing in mineral markets.

Our government has been focused on the things we can control, to best position the territory for the mining sector’s emergence from the global downturn. We have invested in training for Yukoners, built infrastructure so that workers with mining-relevant skills remain in the territory and projects can benefit, endeavoured to improve our regulatory and assessment regimes, and actively promoted Yukon as a great place to invest.

The forum and tour are key aspects of our government’s greater commitment to promote and support investment in Yukon. We have dedicated $1 million to the YMA over the next three years, allowing them to facilitate a number of events and conferences that will continue to showcase mining opportunities in Yukon to the rest of the world.

Our government takes the time to network with industry leaders, build relationships with investors from other countries and encourage more foreign investment in Yukon-based exploration projects. This approach has laid the foundation for future success in the mining sector. World leaders like Goldcorp understand the potential here and the great work of this government to make it happen. The mining industry wants to be in Yukon and this government will continue to partner to make it happen.

We have exceptional potential for future resource development, and with the combined efforts of our government, the Yukon Mining Alliance and Yukon First Nations development corporations, it is clear that we will be well-positioned when the inevitable upturn in resource markets occurs.

Our government understands business and will continue to encourage investment in the mining sector, while at the same time ensuring responsible development here in Yukon.