Minerals and Metals Facts

Canada's minerals sector is a mainstay of the national economy that supports jobs and economic activity in every region. Explore how the minerals sector contributes to the Canadian economy and our everyday lives.

Minerals and the economy

Key facts

  • In 2017, Canada produced over 60 minerals and metals worth nearly $44 billion
  • The minerals sector, which includes mining, primary processing and metal product manufacturing, directly employed 426,000 individuals in 2017, an increase of 2.1% over 2016
  • In 2016, Indigenous people accounted for 12% of the labour force in the mining industry, up from 8% in 2011, and ranking mining as the private sector industry with the highest Indigenous representation after fishing, hunting and trapping
  • Canada's domestic exports of mineral and metal products reached $97.5 billion in 2017, up 9.9% over 2016, and accounted for 19.4% of its total merchandise exports
  • Canadian exploration and mining companies had mining assets in over 100 countries, worth $163.9 billion in 2016
  • In 2017, mineral exploration expenditures in Canada increased 29.6% to 2.1 billion, compared with $1.6 billion in 2016

Minerals and Metals

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