Canada looks into the hiring of Chinese miners in B.C.

Canada’s federal government has launched an investigation into the use of foreign workers at a HD Mining International Ltd.’s coal mine in northern British Columbia, joining the provincial government, which opened an inquiry last week.

BC Federation of Labour President, Jim Sinclair, told News1130 that the Temporary Foreign Worker program is being abused, as the positions offered are not temporary. He added there is an ulterior motive in play.

HD Mining International Ltd. was granted a permit to bring Chinese miners to conduct exploration work at its proposed Murray River coal project near Tumbler Ridge, BC.

The company insists there weren’t any Canadian workers trained in the specialized skills it needs.

However, HD Mining has reportedly been using dubious recruiting practices, as it posted online want ads for six coal mine managers that stipulated Mandarin as a requisite.

According to the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training's website, a company can be fined up to $10,000 if found guilty of breaching the province's Employment Standards Act.

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada will join forces to determine whether the company's permit applications met all of the essential requirements.