PDAC commends the Government of Canada’s funding for skills training in the mining sector

TORONTO (November 20, 2013) – The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) commends the Government of Canada’s commitment to address skills shortages in the mining sector. The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, spoke earlier today on the government’s plan to improve labour market challenges through the Canada Job Grant.

“The Canadian mining industry will need to fill close to 150,000 mining-related jobs by 2023,” says Ross Gallinger, PDAC’s Executive Director. “The skilled labour shortage we’re facing as an industry is real. The support of Minister Kenney and the Government of Canada will play an important role in closing the skills gap in the sector.”

The government committed to focus funding to support post-secondary education as well as job-ready training programs for unemployed and under-skilled Canadians. The funding from the government will also include apprenticeship grants and tax credits to encourage Canadians to pursue careers in the skilled trades.

“In 2007 we saw a need to encourage more people into the geosciences to pursue a career in mineral exploration and improve the overall health of the industry by increasing interaction between students and industry professionals,” says Gallinger. “Up until now our focus has been on attracting more students into the industry, but with the government’s support we can look at expanding our educational initiatives to attract and include under-represented groups to address the skills shortage.”

One of the PDAC’s skills shortage initiatives is the annual Student-Industry Mineral Exploration Workshop (S-IMEW). Lead by over 60 volunteer industry experts in the exploration and mining sector, it exposes 26 post-secondary geosciences students to all aspects of the mineral exploration industry and gives them a practical and business perspective of mineral exploration that is not available inside the classroom. The PDAC continues to focus on job-ready initiatives that work towards addressing the skills shortage in the mining industry.

PDAC also supports PDAC Mining Matters, a charitable organization committed to educating young students, teachers and the general public on Canada’s geology and mineral resources. Since its creation, PDAC Mining Matters has provided a better understanding of Earth science and the diverse career opportunities available in the minerals industry to over 500,000 students, educators and members of the general public.

About the PDAC

The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) is a national association representing the mineral exploration and development industry. The PDAC has more than 10,000 individual and corporate members, and encourages the highest standards of technical, environmental, safety and social practices in Canada and around the world. The PDAC also hosts the mineral industry’s largest annual convention in downtown Toronto. The PDAC 2014 Convention will take place from March 2 to March 5.