Mining companies in Canada are getting ready for a surge in mining activity that could be worth as much as $100 billion this year, according to the Canadian Mining Association.
The association reported Tuesday that mining revenue in the country has grown by 40 per cent in the last year, to $1.7 billion, with $500 million in revenue expected in 2017.
The association said in its latest quarterly report that mining has become more popular among Canadians in recent years due to the economic downturn and the growing popularity of cryptocurrency mining.
“We believe Canada is poised to become the world leader in cryptocurrency mining,” said Gary C. Shrout, president of the Canadian Association of Mining Corporations.
“In 2019, mining will be the biggest industry in the world.”
The mining industry accounts for more than 50 per cent of Canada’s gross domestic product and is responsible for more jobs than the manufacturing sector.
“The industry is growing at a rate of 25 per cent per year and it will add over 20,000 jobs to our economy over the next five years,” Shrouts said.
The Canadian Association for Mining Professionals (CAMP) said mining accounted for about $8.6 billion in revenue in 2018.
It added that mining could contribute up to $8 billion more to Canada’s GDP by 2024.
“There’s a lot of growth potential in Canada.
I think the world will look at us and say, ‘Wow, Canada is going to be the gold standard in mining,'” Shrouting said.
Bitcoin, which uses blockchain technology to record transactions, has become a popular choice for mining because it is decentralized and transactions are irreversible.
Bitcoin has been around for a few years and has grown in popularity as a form of digital currency.
Bitcoin mining, which has grown to about $20 billion per year, has also attracted interest from governments around the world.
Canada has been a pioneer in the bitcoin mining industry, and it is estimated that it will employ about 10,000 people to process bitcoins.
In 2020, there were more than 4,000 mining rigs in Canada, according the Canadian Mines Association.
The Canadian Association reported that mining accounted to about 20 per cent (or $1 billion) of Canada, up from 15 per cent or $2.5 billion in 2016.
Canada’s mining industry has a growing focus on security and transparency, according a 2017 report by the Canadian Institute of Risk and Information Technology (CIREIT).
CIREIT said Canada’s mining sector has increased transparency, with its mining audits regularly being conducted by third parties and publicly available to the public.
“It is an exciting time to be a member of this industry, because the world is moving towards blockchain technology,” said Shroutine.
“There is much greater transparency now, so companies can see how much they are spending on security.”