WHITE RIVER — Today, Premier Doug Ford and Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, attended the official opening of Harte Gold’s Sugar Zone gold mine near White River. Senior management at Harte worked closely with the government and Indigenous communities to complete the project, which will create about 150 jobs and demonstrate that Ontario is Open for Business.
“The opening of Harte Gold’s Sugar Zone mine is a signal to the world that Ontario is Open for Business. It shows that this government is committed to improving the conditions for businesses, so they can thrive. It’s also one more example of why Ontario is a global leader in mineral exploration and production,” said Ford. “We told the people of Ontario we would create and protect good, local jobs all over the province. We will continue to support businesses that are bringing more prosperity and economic growth to every corner of Ontario.”
The government of Ontario supported Harte Gold’s participation in a number of international investment marketing missions that ultimately led to secured financing. The Sugar Zone mine is expected to be in operation for over a decade, during which time it could produce more than 900,000 ounces of gold. It will also generate increased activity for businesses that support Northern Ontario’s mining supply and services sector.
“Opening a new gold mine is a tremendous feat for any mining company, particularly a former junior exploration company,” said Rickford. “Sugar Zone mine will be a powerful economic engine in the region, and is a great example of growth and prosperity happening here in Northern Ontario.”
“Mining is key to Ontario’s continued economic success. It attracts billions every year in capital, most of which is spent directly in Northern Ontario,” said Ford. “Today’s announcement means that success can continue for years to come.”
In 2017, Ontario produced $9.9 billion worth of minerals, accounting for 22 per cent of Canada’s total mineral production.
Mineral production in Ontario supports 26,000 direct jobs and 50,000 indirect jobs associated with mineral manufacturing and processing.
After the Sugar Zone mine reaches full commercial production, Ontario will have 39 operating mines, including 18 gold mines.
Two-thirds of Ontario mining jobs are located in Northern Ontario, and most of Ontario exploration jobs are in Northern Ontario.
There are more than 900 mining supply services companies in Ontario, over 300 of which are located in Northern Ontario.
It is estimated that Indigenous people account for roughly 11 per cent of Ontario’s mining labour force.
Ontario is one of the most attractive jurisdictions for mineral exploration in the world, and consistently accounts for about 25 per cent of Canada’s total exploration and deposit appraisal spending.