Economic benefits generated by mining: the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region tops the list

Québec City, October 20, 2020 – A new study of the economic benefits generated by the mining industry in Québec, published by the Québec Mining Association (QMA), once again confirms the domination of the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region, which harvests the largest share of benefits from mining activities. Whether in terms of total expenditure, number of jobs or number of suppliers, the region ranks first for all the indicators studied.

The Abitibi-Témiscamingue regions accounts for $3.44 billion in spending by mining companies, out of a total of almost $10 billion for Québec as a whole. For the region, this represents an increase of $1.5 billion since 2014.

In addition to spending, the study shows that almost 15,000 of the 48,000 total jobs supported by the mining industry are held by residents of the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region, including 6,615 direct jobs, placing it in front of the Côte Nord region (over 7,100 total jobs) and Montréal (over 6,400 total jobs).

The Abitibi-Témiscamingue region also has the largest number of suppliers, with 1,210 suppliers making up 24.5% of the total.

The mining industry’s contribution to prosperity and economic vitality in the region is clear, since it accounts for almost 19.5% of total employment in the region and almost 24% of total employment income. It is also important to mention that the average annual salary in the industry is close to $104,000, well above the average annual salary in Québec of $64,000. The mining industry contributes almost $2.9 billion, or 36% of total GDP for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region.

The study also addresses a frequently-asked question: how much do governments receive from mineral resource development? The answer: over $1 billion each year. More specifically, $1.3 billion was paid to the Québec government alone in 2018, without including corporate income tax, while the Government of Canada received a further $500 million.

Although the data relates to activities in 2018, it is the most recent available and provides a representative view of the contribution made by the mining industry to Québec’s socio-economic development.

The full report can be viewed here.

« It is always striking to see the contribution made by the mining industry to Québec’s economy, and this is especially true for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region. Obviously, mining has been in the region’s DNA since it was founded, but seeing how it has renewed its approach and grown over the years offers hope for the future. »

« The results released today show, once gain, the full extent of the industry’s contribution to the so-called mining regions, but also, significantly, to major urban centres. This reminds us that regions like Montréal and Montérégie are a lot closer to the mining industry than at first appears. »

« Thanks to the resilience of the workers in Québec’s mining industry and their ability to innovate, mining companies have returned to the levels of activity seen before the COVID-19 pandemic relatively quickly. However, it will be interesting to see, in the next study of economic benefits covering the results for 2020, whether the pandemic has had an impact on employment and expenditure in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region. Strong gold prices and promising new projects under development, the region is in a strong position to recover from the current situation and to continue to enjoy the benefits generated by the mining industry. »

– Josée Méthot, President and CEO of the Québec Mining Association

About the Québec Mining Association

The Québec Mining Association (QMA) was founded in 1936 and speaks proactively for mining companies involved in exploration, extraction and processing, mining contractors and junior mining companies, along with suppliers, institutions, non-profit organizations and other mining sector partners. It is proud of the 48,006 jobs and total expenditure of $9.9 billion generated by Québec’s mining industry in 2018. The QMA’s mission is to promote, support and proactively develop a responsible, committed and innovative mining industry in Québec.