COVID-19: MINING TO CONTINUE - A DECISION IN KEEPING WITH THE STRINGENT MEASURES PUT IN PLACE BY THE MINING INDUSTRY
Québec City, January 6, 2021 – The Québec Mining Association (QMA) welcomes the announcement that mining will continue despite the full-scale lockdown ordered by the government, based on the robust measures introduced by the mining industry to limit the spread of COVID-19 at mine sites.
Because workplace health and safety is already deeply rooted in the industry, mining companies have worked since the spring to establish controls at the entrance to mine sites, or in some cases at a distance from the entrance, to limit the risk of infection. Some companies also have their own laboratories to test for the virus.
The mining industry has left nothing to chance, and the government has recognized the positive impact of its actions, as reflected in the small number of cases reported for work teams in the mining sector.
The mining industry has always contributed to the socio-economic prosperity of Québec and its regions, and the government has identified it as one of the key sectors that will support the economic recovery. The government’s decision to allow mining to continue is consistent with its plan, which focuses in particular on transportation electrification and the secondary and tertiary processing of mineral resources. It also supports the implementation of the government’s recently-unveiled northern action plan, which specifically targets job creation in outlying regions.
The mining industry will retain its competitive edge with respect to other jurisdictions where production continues, and will be able to meet needs in various supply chains, including the production of medical equipment.
“We understand that the health and safety of the population must come first. This is why the mining industry has taken the matter seriously since the spring. Economic factors will never take precedence over health and safety, and no exceptions will be made. The results achieved through the measures applied show clearly that the safe operation of our mines is possible. The government’s decision to maintain mining activities reflects our own conclusions, and this is reassuring for our industry and for the economy in several different regions.”
“The decision is in line with all the government’s statements that the mining industry will be a cornerstone for the province’s economic recovery.”
- 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, based on the most recent data. The QMA’s mission is to promote, support and proactively develop a responsible, committed and innovative mining industry in Québec.