The royalties and taxes that Canada’s mining sector pays to the federal government and the provinces have rebounded sharply since the worst of the financial crisis, jumping back to 2007 levels.
In 2011, miners and explorers – which excludes derivative industries, like those that supply the miners with equipment – paid $3.9-billion in royalties and mining taxes, according to a new report from the Mining Association of Canada. The 2007 total was just north of that, coming in at $4.0-billion.
The totals, however, may be a bit misleading if you’re thinking of mining as typical previous and base metals. For instance, the report includes oil sands mining royalties in Alberta, which were the highest total for any individual category of mining, reaching $1.6-billion last year.
After Alberta, Saskatchewan had the second highest total, reaching $829-million, stemming from potash and uranium. British Columbia came next reaching $358-million, while Quebec came in fourth with $353-million.
British Columbia is the only major province to see its total slip last year, after an increase in coal royalties was offset by falling taxes for other minerals.
As a reminder of just how little the mining sector used to contribute to provincial and federal coffers, it paid just $570-million in royalties and mining taxes in 2002. By 2008, that was up almost ten times to $5.3-billion.