Canada’s minerals sector is a mainstay of the national economy; in 2015, the sector directly employed nearly 373,000 Canadians and accounted for 19.1% of exports, and 3.3% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
British Columbia (BC) is internationally recognized as a centre of expertise in mining, metallurgy, environmental engineering, mine safety, and geoscience. The province is home to the world’s largest concentration of exploration companies and mining professionals.
BC is Canada’s largest exporter of metallurgical coal (used in steelmaking) and one of its largest copper producers, as well as a significant producer of gold, silver, lead, and zinc.3 Due to increased demand from the construction industry, BC is also a hub for stone, sand, and gravel mining and quarrying, with 675 active gravel mines in the province.
This report examines the mining sector in BC, and explores its contributions to the Columbia Basin-Boundary region. This report looks specifically at the indicators in the following areas:
- Mining sector establishments;
- Economic contributions; and
- Employment within the mining sector.
The following page presents relevant sector highlights.