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PRESS RELEASE - OUR RESOURCES, NEW FRONTIERS: CANADA'S ENERGY AND MINES MINISTERS DISCUSS RESPONSIBLE RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT AND PRIORITIES FOR THE UPCOMING YEAR
August 26, 2014 Sudbury, Ontario Natural Resources Canada
Canada’s energy and mines ministers today agreed that significant progress has been made to enhance environmental protection while growing the economy subsequent to priorities outlined at the 2013 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.
Over two days of discussions, themed Our Resources, New Frontiers, the ministers reaffirmed the critical importance of the principles agreed to in recent annual meetings:
- The responsible development of Canada’s energy and mines sectors is critical to our economic competitiveness, job creation and long- term prosperity;
- Provincial and territorial governments will work with the federal government in support of Canada’s commitment to establish new mandatory reporting standards for Canadian extractive companies with a view to enhancing transparency of payments made to governments;
- The continued advancement of energy infrastructure (eg. oil, gas, electricity, etc…) projects is fundamental to gaining access to new markets, generating economic growth and revenue for critical social programs;
- Important progress is being made by all levels of government in implementing regulatory reform in a way that ensures the environment is protected;
- Strengthening cooperation between the federal, provincial and territorial governments is critical to ensuring world-class safety for energy transportation;
- Effective engagement is essential to ensure Aboriginal communities benefit fully from responsible resource development. The mineral sector continues to be the largest private employer of Aboriginal people in Canada;
- Continued collaboration on responsible energy use is important in providing energy and cost savings to consumers and industry as well as contributing to meeting environmental objectives.
In particular, following this week’s meetings, the ministers emphasized the need to continue working collaboratively over the coming year in the interests of:
- Reinforcing the diversification of our natural resources by ensuring the safe transport of resources by pipeline, marine and rail, including the implementation of federal legislation to build upon our world-class energy transportation system;
- Enhancing Aboriginal participation in energy and mining projects is critical in developing Canada’s natural resources;
- Exploring the framework to promote the long-term competitiveness of Canada's junior mining sector in cooperation with stakeholders;
- Highlighting Canada’s position as a responsible resource supplier and a global leader in energy efficiency and conservation, thereby attracting investment critical to the development and diversification of our resources;
- Reinforcing Canada’s role in strengthening global energy security by providing access to expertise and natural resources;
- Helping Canadian natural resource industries address environmental performance, through the advancement of research, technology and innovation;
- Implementing mandatory reporting standards for payments made by the extractive sector to governments.
These actions, undertaken by federal, provincial and territorial governments, will promote Canada’s role as a responsible and secure supplier of natural resources while ensuring long-term economic stability and prosperity for all Canadians. Such collaborative measures will benefit producers and consumers by providing cost savings along with strong safety regulations.
There are hundreds of major natural resources projects under construction or planned over the next 10 years, worth approximately $675 billion in investment.
In addition, as outlined in the report Our Resources, New Frontiers: Overview of Competitiveness in Canada’s Natural Resources Sector, Canada has the lowest business tax cost in the G7; the World Economic Forum says Canada’s banking system is the best in the world; Bloomberg lists Canada as the second-best country in the world to do business in 2014; the International Energy Agency ranked Canada second out of 15 peer nations for its rate of energy efficiency improvements from 1990 to 2010; and we have one of the most well-educated and skilled workforces in the world.
All Provinces and Territories support the principle of mandatory reporting standards for the extractive sector on payments to governments. With this support, the Government of Canada intends to enact legislation. The federal government will defer by two years the requirement for industry to report their payments made to Aboriginal governments and continue engaging Aboriginal groups regarding mandatory reporting standards. This will further support international competitiveness for companies working domestically or around the world.
The ministers will reconvene from July 19 to 21, 2015, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, for the next Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference.
“We are proud of Canada’s abundant natural resources and our capacity to meet the growing domestic and global demand for energy, minerals and metals. To maintain our competitive advantage and world-class reputation, we must continue to work collaboratively with all levels of government and industry to build new export infrastructure while advancing responsible resource development.”
The Honourable Greg Rickford,
Canada's Minister of Natural Resources and
Minister for the Federal Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
“Ensuring a clean, affordable and reliable electricity supply to support natural resource sector economic and industrial opportunities is a top priority. Ontario is excited to work with the federal Government to ensure electricity infrastructure, including vital transmission projects across northern Ontario, while at the same time recognizing the cheapest form of generation is conservation.”
Minister of Energy and
Member of Provincial Parliament for Ottawa West–Nepean
“Working together with the other provinces and territories in Canada, we will strengthen our nation’s mining sector. Ontario’s approach to mining works: our focus is on ensuring that Aboriginal communities, industry, municipalities and government benefit from resource development while staying environmentally responsible. We are proud to be a strong part of Canada’s economy, and a major player in exploration and production of minerals globally.”
Minister of Northern Development and Mines and
Member of Provincial Parliament for Thunder Bay–Superior North
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