The Canadian mining sector is set to get a major shot in the arm thanks to government funding.
With a total bourse amounting to C$1.5 billion, the Canadian government’s Critical Minerals Infrastructure Fund (CMIF) is seen as a gamechanger that could revolutionize the industry as it will be used to fund initiatives related to clean energy, electrification, and infrastructure, as well as transportation, essentially everything necessary to bring key minerals from the mines to the markets.
Private mining concerns may apply for up to C$50 million for each project. Local government offices on both the provincial and territorial levels may avail of up to C$100 million per initiative.
The initial pool of funds currently amounts to C$300 million and applications to avail of the funding are open until February 29, 2024. The rest of the bourse will be distributed throughout a seven-year period by Canada’s Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources.
In the Name of Independence
The CMIF is one of several plans that the Canadian government has set in motion to boost its local stockpile of minerals necessary for the shift towards renewable energy which, in turn, will decrease its dependence on foreign imports, particularly from China which maintains a strong grip on much of the global mining and mineral processing sectors.
According to Canadian energy minister Jonathan Wilkinson, he sees an exponential increase in the demand for critical minerals as international governments fast-track their nations towards the implementation of carbon-free power solutions. He added that the CMIF is just one of several investments that Canada will make to ensure the sustainable development of mineral mining sites, as well as processing facilities.
Prior to the introduction of the CMIF, Ottawa’s local government implemented its own C$3.8 million strategy for the critical minerals sector last year. This was meant to develop sites dedicated to minerals used in the production of rechargeable batteries, as well as equipment for renewable power facilities including solar panels and wind turbines.