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MAMI Re-engages with MB Government

June 16, 2021

The pandemic has created many challenges for industries across the province. Between the government's focus on pandemic efforts, to the pause on 'business as usual' for in-person meetings. For many industries this has meant that engagement with government has been difficult and limited.

That said, with our new Co-Directorship in place, MAMI has begun a new chapter of engagement focusing on priorities for our members and beginning to plan a path forward coming out of the pandemic.

In the past weeks, initial meetings with provincial Minister of Agriculture and Resource Development - Blaine Pedersen's office took place. We were met with a positive reception and a desire for continued and increased engagement with MAMI was expressed. Several important issues were raised, including the need for improvement in Manitoba's rankings with the recent publication of the Fraser Institute's annual Survey of Mining Companies - and everything this entails including permitting, investment and economic development opportunities.

As some of you already know, Steve Demmings, Senior Project Manager, Priorities & Planning, retired recently. Steve was a key contact for the mining sector within the cabinet support area. MAMI held an initial meeting with Steve's replacement Duncan Hamilton, and similar challenges and issues impacting the sector were discussed.

Outreach was also conducted to gain an introductory meeting with the Industry Advancement Division regarding the recent changes to the Economic Development Office - parts of which have shifted back to Agriculture and Resource Development. Issues explored included mining projects in development as well as the role and function of the office.

MAMI will also engage with the new Director of Mining, Oil and Gas, Tafa Kennedy, in the coming weeks.

Across government, initial outreach has been positive and welcomed. There have been many changes to a number of departments that interact with the mining sector, so it will be critical to both understand how these changes affect the mining industry, as well as who Manitoba's key decision-makers will be going forward.

What we know: the need for an increased presence, and ongoing engagement has never been more important for the mining sector as the economy begins to recover from the effects of the pandemic. The Manitoba provincial government will need guidance and direction as it determines priorities for economic development in sectors across the province, and MAMI has a strong role to play to ensure the mining sector receives the attention needed regarding outstanding issues and key opportunities. To this end, MAMI has also had planning discussions with the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce to partner in hosting a comprehensive mining forum with the province.

Going forward, MAMI will make every effort in the coming months to meet and develop strong working relationships with the various key officials across the provincial government. And, as opportunities for in-person meetings return, MAMI will be focussed on providing insights for government into areas where we feel that the mining sector can be enhanced, and more opportunities realized. Your insight and feedback are always welcome, and MAMI will report progress on our outreach initiatives soon as the province slowly and carefully 'reopens' for business.


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