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Ontario and Saskatchewan Ramp Up Mining Sector Investments

The Canadian provinces of Ontario and Saskatchewan are funnelling substantial funds into their mining sectors to bolster critical minerals infrastructure and cultivate the next generation of miners.

The investments are poised to revitalize key areas of the provinces’ economies and enhance their global competitiveness.

In its 2024 budget, Ontario announced plans to inject C$15 million into the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund (CMIF) to foster research and development in the critical minerals sector. The investment will be spread across three years, and will help boost research, development and commercialization of forward-thinking technologies.

Launched in late 2022, the CMIF offers funding of up to 50 percent of eligible project costs, capped at C$500,000 per project. The fund targets sectors that are vital for national defense, emerging technologies and a low-carbon future.

Several companies, including Carbonix, Canada Nickel Company (TSXV:CNC,OTCQX:CNIKF), the Canadian division of Vale (NYSE:VALE) and Wyloo Metals, have already received substantial funding under the CMIF for their pioneering projects aimed at enhancing the extraction and processing of critical minerals.

The budget highlights that Ontario has already earmarked C$1 billion to fortify critical legacy infrastructure, focusing on all-season roads, broadband connectivity and community support systems in the Ring of Fire region.

The province is also committed to supporting various infrastructure projects, such as the Marten Falls Community Access Road Project and the Webequie Supply Road Project, in collaboration with Indigenous partners.

Saskatchewan investing in next generation of miners

Saskatchewan, a notable producer of potash and uranium, is also honing in on its mining sector through a C$100,000 investment to promote careers in the mining and exploration industry.

The initiative, unveiled on March 27 in partnership with the Saskatchewan Mining Association (SMA), aims to equip students with a deeper understanding of the diverse career opportunities available in the province’s mining industry.

In 2023, SMA’s education outreach program provided a wide array of lesson plans and teaching modules to over 7,800 students, 880 community members and 460 teachers across 90 Saskatchewan communities.

‘Saskatchewan is one of the most attractive jurisdictions in the world for mining,’ said Immigration and Career Training Minister Jeremy Harrison. ‘As our footprint in the global mining industry continues to grow, it’s important we build the workforce needed to support this growth. This funding will provide educational opportunities for students to learn about careers in the mining sector and allow them to benefit from the jobs our rapidly growing economy is creating.’

Securities Disclosure: I, Giann Liguid, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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