The Mining Association of Canada (MAC) expresses grave concern regarding the significant economic impact that the CP rail strike will have on mining communities and urges the Government of Canada to take immediate action to resolve the labour dispute.
The impact is felt strongly by mining companies dependent on rail to either transport fuel in, or transport products and by-products from operations. “A strike by CP workers will have a seriously harmful effect on the industry,” said Pierre Gratton, MAC’s President and CEO. “The shipment of fuel and other supplies to mine sites will be compromised as will the transport of mineral products.”
The CP rail strike will cause a shortfall of essential fuel and supply shipments to mines across Canada. It will also prevent mines from delivering their products to their end-point destinations, thus seriously and adversely affecting their ability to operate at any functional capacity.
“On the backdrop of recent, painful and ongoing service disruptions in the rail freight market, and the damage this has already done to Canada’s reputation as a reliable trading partner, the economy can ill afford the effects of a protracted labour dispute that grinds a half of Canada’s rail freight capacity to a halt,” said Gratton.
On behalf of the mining industry in Canada, MAC urges the federal government to take early action to head off this potential work stoppage before it damages the economy. In the event of a strike action, we recommend that the government impose binding arbitration to address this dispute – and to also consider such arbitration as a required step in future labour disputes involving the Class 1 railroads, given the frequency and adverse impact of such disputes.
According to MAC’s latest Facts & Figures report, the Canadian mining industry accounts for over 50% of the freight revenues of Canada’s rail system yearly. The industry is also a key economic driver for the country having contributed $58 billion to Canada’s GDP, employed directly and indirectly 596,000 workers, and accounted for 19% (>$88 billion) of the total overall value of Canada’s exports.
The Mining Association of Canada is the national organization for the Canadian mining industry. Its members account for most of Canada’s production of base and precious metals, uranium, diamonds, metallurgical coal, mined oil sands and industrial minerals and are actively engaged in mineral exploration, mining, smelting, refining and semi-fabrication. Please visit www.mining.ca.
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