Message from the Minister of State for Mining
and Accountability Statement

Photograph -- Honourable Kevin KreugerMining in British Columbia is a tremendous success story as record levels of exploration, development, investment and new mine openings have put the mineral exploration and development industry back on the map. Mining in British Columbia has been reborn. New levels of exploration driven by renewed international investor confidence in B.C. is leading to mines opening, creating highly paid mining jobs. British Columbia's minerals are essential to support our standard of living and social programs. Not only does resource revenue help fund healthcare and education, these valuable resources are the basic building blocks for technology, construction, pharmaceuticals, even the clothes on our backs.

British Columbia is one of the richest mineral regions in the world. The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources intends to build upon our improvements in policy, regulation and support for the industry, reflected in the resurgence of the mining sector. Mining in British Columbia is forecast to be a $6 billion industry in 2006. Mineral exploration is at a 15-year high and has seen a staggering increase of more than 800 per cent since 2001. Two major mines opened in 2006, and almost half of all new potential mine development projects in Canada are located right here in British Columbia.

The Ministry intends to create opportunities for industry to capitalize on B.C.'s tremendous resource potential including coal, aggregate, industrial minerals and metal resources. The significant upturn in international mineral commodity markets coupled with the growing economies of Asia, provide British Columbia with opportunities to benefit from exploration investments and new and expanded mine developments. Government policies and commodity prices are fuelling investor confidence, increasing revenues and creating jobs to develop these essential resources.

The Ministry will be at the forefront in leading mining trade delegations to China in support of the Province's Asia-Pacific Initiative, further integrating the Province into Asian markets and defining British Columbia's role in the Asia Pacific economy.

The BC Mining Plan: Report on Progress shows how we're working closely with a wide range of other agencies, individuals and organizations to implement the 57 specific action items included in the 2005 BC Mining Plan. Together, we are creating a thriving, globally competitive, safe and environmentally responsible exploration and mining industry. British Columbia's mines are among the most environmentally responsible and technologically advanced in the world.

We are teaming up with educational institutions and industry groups to educate the next generation of mine workers and equip them with the skills needed to explore the challenging careers this high tech industry has to offer.

We are proud to support the mining industry, mine workers, and mining communities and will continue to work to increase investment and exploration in mining, creating jobs and economic benefits for all British Columbians.

I am the Minister of State for Mining and under the Balanced Budget and Ministerial Accountability Act, I am accountable for achieving the following results for 2007/08:

  1. Develop and implement an Asia Pacific Initiative to encourage those countries to:
    1. invest in B.C. exploration and mining projects, and
    2. do business with the B.C. mining services sector (engineering, reclamation, health and safety, financial and legal consulting service businesses).
  2. Improve global competitiveness and investment in B.C. by streamlining regulations and reducing regulatory overlap between various levels of government.
  3. Increase education, training and skills development to address skills shortages in mineral exploration and mining.
  4. Improve community and First Nations' awareness of the economic and social benefits from sustainable mineral exploration and mining.

Honourable Kevin Krueger
Minister of State for Mining

February 13, 2007

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