PDAC report shows financing for mineral exploration and mining sector at a crossroads
Exploration spending jumped more than 30 per cent in Canada and almost 20 per cent globally in 2018, according to a new study released today by the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) and Oreninc.
State of Mineral Finance 2019: At the Crossroads shows that financing had weakened overall, stalling the investment rebound that had previously emerged.
Alarmingly, global funding for exploration financing dropped 50 per cent year-over-year, the report shows.
“The mineral exploration and mining industry is still feeling the effects of declining investment across the world, and despite earlier signals that the worst of the downturn was behind us, investor confidence and spending hasn’t fully returned,” says Glenn Mullan, PDAC President.
The report shows that Canada was not immune but better shielded from declining investment in 2018 as exploration-specific financing fell by roughly half the global decline at around 25 per cent year-over-year.
“Our report highlights both the severity of current finance trends and also the resilience of Canada’s minerals industry which saw spending grow versus the rest of the world,” adds Mullan.
“Canada is by no means immune from the declining investment trends, especially as we find ourselves less competitive on the world stage. This uncertainty means we must continue finding ways to create opportunities to maintain our position as an attractive country to explore, invest and mine.”
Weak metal prices are the likely driver behind declining 2018 investment, and uncertainties in global trade and growth charts an ambiguous path forward for financing over the coming year.
The full State of Mineral Finance 2019: At the Crossroads report is available on the PDAC website.
Canada’s mineral exploration and mining industry contributes around $97 billion in gross domestic product (GDP) annually, employs more than 630,000 workers (directly and indirectly), represents around 19% ($98 billion) of domestic exports, and is the largest private-sector industrial employer on a proportional basis of Indigenous peoples in the country.