Canada's North is rich in natural resources and holds tremendous potential for resource development. Large mineral deposits which could support resources extraction projects within the territories include diamonds, gold, base metals and silver, tungsten, uranium, rare earth element, iron ore, zinc, and copper. One quarter of the country's discovered oil and gas resources are in the North, as well as close to one third of Canada's overall potential.
The resource development sector in the North is a major driver of economic growth in Canada, and fosters growth in other sectors including communications, energy and transportation infrastructure, and commercial services. Between 2011 and 2020, mining in Canada's North is expected to nearly double, with a predicted compound annual growth rate of 7.5 per cent in the territories compared to 2.2 per cent in the rest of Canada. As of December 2013, there were over 30 major projects that were either entering or moving through the environmental assessment and permitting processes across the three territories, with an estimated capital investment of over $25 billion.
The Government of Canada recognizes that the future prosperity of the North requires credible development of its natural resources. The Government of Canada is strengthening environmental protection; enhancing pipeline and marine safety; and creating high-value resource development jobs.
As the tremendous natural resource exploration and development potential in Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories draws global interest and investment, the Government of Canada is working to create a more efficient northern regulatory regime that will attract investment, safeguard the environment, and ensure meaningful Aboriginal consultation.
At CanNor, both the Northern Projects Management Office (NPMO) and its regional economic development arm work with industry, northern governments, communities, Aboriginal groups and other partners to promote resource development across the territories to support economic growth and long-term prosperity for Northerners and all Canadians.
Through its suite of funding programs, CanNor support for the resource development sector has totaled over $21 million since 2009, which has included funding for training, geosciences and other mining-related projects. CanNor's program funding helps to attract investment to this sector, as well as increase the capacity of the labour force to take advantage of associated employment opportunities.
To find out more about CanNor programs and services that support the resource development sector, please follow these links: