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Mining trucks

The following is an excerpt from an article I contributed to iPolitics.

Few industries are as embedded in the fabric of Canada’s economy as the mining sector. Canada is a major mining country and a top ten global producer of seventeen key metals and minerals.

Most people know that extracting and processing these materials is an important part of Canada’s industrial sector and an es­sential source of GDP, jobs and government revenues throughout Canada. But, when the Canadian Chamber of Commerce undertook a study of the mining industry last summer, we did not anticipate the full breadth of mining’s contribution to our economy or its im­pact on “downstream” industries like insur­ance, finance and law.

We know it’s big. It employs 320,000 people; it represents nearly a quarter of the value of our exports; it accounts for over one-half of all rail-freight revenues on our railways, and it is one of the largest Aboriginal employers in the country

We also know it’s strategically significant for Canada. Last week the OECD released a major study of trade patterns, focusing on who is realizing the value, as opposed to the familiar measures of volumes. What industry emerged as the most significant for Canada’s exports? Mining.

Read the complete article.