In recent years, the steady, reliable, and secure supply of critical metals has become increasingly important to major industrialized economies that seek to sustain their industrial base and develop advanced technologies, such as clean energy. In light of this, Canada, with its significant critical metal reserves, has an opportunity to supply some of the global demand for critical metals. However, to transition from promising mineral deposits to marketable products, investment in fundamental Research & Development and expertise is needed to address the complex technological challenges around the production, separation and processing of critical metals, and to better understand the global market for these key commodities.
Chromite deposits located in Ontario’s Ring of Fire have production potential that could make Canada a significant global producer, processor and supplier of products that contain the critical metal chromium.
Rare earth elements are critical minerals that represent an opportunity for Canada to enter an emerging and globally strategic market. As they are needed to the manufacture of all high technology, clean energy, aerospace, automotive, defence and many other industrial products. While rare earths are abundant geologically, they are economically recoverable in only a few mineral deposits.
Research and development is addressing key knowledge gaps to support the sustainable development of REE and chromite resources in Canada, by developing and deploying innovative processes that improve efficiency and competitiveness while resolving potential environmental challenges. The R&D will be coupled with strategic market and economic analyses to support Canada as a major market entrant to these two industries.