April 26, 2022
Two of Canada’s federal Ministers were in the Northwest Territories last week to promote the merits of the federal government’s Budget 2022.
First up, it was Canada’s Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister for PrairiesCan and Minister for CanNor Dan Vandal. Speaking on April 14th he committed $15 million to invest in Indigenous economic development through CanNor; as well as additional investments in a new national innovation and investment agency and in the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada.
Then on April 21st, it was Canada’s Transport Minister Omar Alghabra’s turn. Speaking at the Yellowknife airport, he highlighted that the federal government is ready to help the Northwest Territories develop its potential as part of the supply chain for critical minerals.
The federal government has identified 31 minerals it believes will position the country as a leading supplier of critical minerals. It is preparing to spend $3.8 billion to implement Canada's first Critical Minerals Strategy. More than half of these minerals can be found in the NWT.
ITI Minister Caroline Wawzonek used both occasions to highlight to media and her federal counterparts that the Northwest Territories is well positioned to join the conversation on critical minerals and metals.
Read more: What is a Critical Mineral?
For potential mining investors, Minister Wawzonek also emphasized the NWT’s strong environmental, social, and governance, or ESG metrics. As the world recovers from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is an increased appetite for investments with strong ESG performance.
Earlier this month, ITI Deputy Minister Pam Strand participated in a multi-jurisdictional roundtable focused on opportunities in Canada’s critical minerals sector and what can be done to secure supply chains for these essential minerals to the green economy and North America’s future energy security.
Read more: ITI Promotes NWT Critical Mineral Potential
In her address to an ITI-sponsored Critical Minerals Workshop last November, Minister Wawzonek said the NWT has an opportunity to play a leading role in the supply of critical minerals and metals to meet growing international demand for advanced technologies and a greener economy.
The Premier and Minister are preparing to take the same message to investors at the annual gathering of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) in June.