The year 2012 was an eventful one for the Canadian mining industry. The sector had just seen an incredible year in 2011, which broke records in exploration spending, mineral production value and exports. In 2012, mining continued to outshine many other sectors in Canada in terms of strength, despite some volatility in the latter part of the year in the commodity market.
Looking back, the year was particularly noteworthy due a heightened pace of regulatory reform, which kept MAC and its members busy analyzing how the legislative changes would affect the industry. Federal Budget 2012 introduced changes to the Fisheries Act, and introduced a new Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, a Navigation Protection Act, and a Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act. Although MAC supports the government’s reform agenda to make the reviews of mining projects more timely and efficient, how some of the reforms will affect project reviews is less clear and some uncertainty will remain until all the pieces are fully implemented. On the taxation side, risks emerged in relation to the federal government’s changes to Foreign Affiliate Dumping rules. Fortunately, MAC was successful in securing several technical amendments to prevent the significant unintended taxation of the mining industry, and a commitment from Finance Canada to consider future amendments and ongoing dialogue with the association and its members.
For more details on the topics discussed here, and on other aspects of MAC’s work, we encourage you to read the Annual Report in full.