June 4, 2012
2012-062
 

Archived - Minister Flaherty Highlights Importance of Responsible Resource Development for Jobs, Growth and Long-Term Prosperity to Ontario

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Toronto — Today the Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, and Harper Government Ministers throughout Canada are putting the spotlight on the benefits of the Government’s plan for Responsible Resource Development to communities across the country, specifically the job creation, growth and long-term prosperity that all Canadians can share in.

Minister Flaherty took the opportunity to outline the steps the government is taking to ensure that Canada's natural resources are developed in a way that contributes to continued economic growth and jobs while strengthening environmental protection.

“Our natural resource industries — energy, mining and minerals processing and forest — account for more than 10 percent of our gross domestic product and provide close to 800,000 jobs in Canada,” said Minister Flaherty. “Responsible Resource Development will ensure that our abundant natural resources are developed in a sustainable way for the benefit of all Canadians.” 

The Minister made these remarks while visiting New Era Tool and Die, a local Toronto company that provides manufacturing services to the energy industry.

It is estimated that energy and other major resource projects could generate more than $500 billion in new investment in Canada over the next 10 years. For example, energy, mining and forestry account for 6 percent of Ontario’s Gross Domestic Product and 4.1 percent of direct employment.  Ontario’s natural resource industries employed approximately 276,000 people last year.

Natural resources will continue to play an important role in Ontario’s economy.  For example, the development of the Ring of Fire in Northern Ontario holds the potential for billions in mineral wealth. This vast reserve of minerals and metals will generate jobs and economic growth in Ontario for decades to come.

“That’s why it’s so important to ensure that Canada has the right conditions in place to attract global investment in our provinces and territories,” said the Minister. “The time is now for Canada’s immense resources. Canada must compete with other resource-rich countries around the world for these job-creating investment dollars.  And this is why we need to ensure timely, efficient and effective project reviews.”

Responsible Resource Development is founded on four main pillars: to make project reviews more predictable and timely while still maintaining thoroughness; to reduce duplication of project reviews; to strengthen environmental protection; and to enhance Aboriginal consultations.

Among the changes, the plan will eliminate inefficiencies between levels of government by enabling provincial governments to replace rather than duplicate assessments by the federal government, provided they can meet federal requirements. The plan also proposes to place firm time limits on reviews, which would have to be completed within two years.

At the same time, the plan proposes measures to strengthen Canada's already high standards for safety and environmental protection. For example, substantial financial penalties would for the first time be imposed for non-compliance with conditions set by environmental reviews.

For more information on Responsible Resource Development, including detailed backgrounders, please visit the Economic Action Plan website.

Mary Ann Dewey-Plante
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Finance
613-996-7861

Jack Aubry
Media Relations
Department of Finance
613-996-8080

Patricia Best
Director of Communication
Office of the Minister
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-996-2007

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