- Stephen Lecce, MPP
Ontario Developing First-Ever Critical Minerals Strategy
March 10, 2021
TORONTO - The Ontario government is developing its first-ever Critical Minerals Strategy to help generate investment, increase the province's competitiveness in the global market, and create jobs and opportunities in the mining sector. It will also support Ontario's transition to a low-carbon economy both at home and abroad. "By developing this strategy, we will strengthen Ontario's position as one of North America's premier jurisdictions for responsibly-sourced critical minerals, including rare earth elements," said Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and Minister of Indigenous Affairs. "We are confident this will generate investment, reduce red tape, create jobs and advance Indigenous participation in the sector. Local and global markets, including Ontario-based industries, are looking for reliable, responsibly-sourced critical minerals and we are ready to capitalize on this growing market demand." Ontario is well positioned to become a global supplier, producer and manufacturer of choice for certain critical minerals, including, but not limited to nickel, copper, cobalt and platinum group elements. "Industries across Ontario and around the world need a steady supply of critical minerals to support new technologies and emerging industries, including electric vehicles," said Minister Rickford. "With the development of a Critical Minerals Strategy, the Province can showcase Ontario's competitive advantage, high mineral development potential and world-class mining sector." New technologies and high-growth sectors that rely on critical minerals include information and communications technology, electronics, energy, aerospace and defence, health and life sciences and transportation. "With an abundance of the critical minerals in Northern Ontario, along with a competitive business climate, innovation and talent, Ontario is well positioned to become a leader in the future of electric vehicle and battery manufacturing," said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. "In fact, recent proposed investments of almost $6 billion over the last several months in Ontario's auto sector will make our province a global hub for EV manufacturing, making us stronger and more resilient as we continue to work towards economic recovery." To inform the Critical Minerals Strategy, the Province is releasing a discussion paper for public consultation on the Environmental Registry of Ontario. A consultation with industry and Indigenous communities will also help guide the development of the Strategy to be released this fall.
In 2019, Ontario produced over $10 billion worth of minerals, accounting for 22 per cent of Canada’s total mineral production.
Ontario minerals are already part of a globally integrated supply chain and Ontario minerals are used in products worldwide.
In October 2020, the Province announced funding to retool Ford of Canada’s Oakville Assembly Complex, transforming Ontario into a global electric vehicle manufacturing hub.
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