Ontario's Ring of Fire Could Generate Tens of Billions of Dollars in Economic Activity and Thousands of Jobs in the Province, New Study Shows

TORONTO, Feb. 20, 2014 /CNW/ - A new report from the Ontario Chamber of Commerce reveals that Ontario's Ring of Fire, the mineral resource-rich region in the James Bay Lowlands, will generate up to $9.4 billion in new economic activity over the first 10 years of operation and sustain 5,500 jobs annually.

According to the study, Beneath the Surface: Uncovering the Economic Potential of Ontario's Ring of Fire, the mining development could generate more than $25 billion across numerous sectors in Ontario by 2047, including $2.7 billion in revenues for the financial services sector and $1.2 billion for the wholesale and retail trade sectors.

"Our study makes it clear that the short-and long-term economic impacts of the Ring of Fire extend far beyond mining," says Allan O'Dette, President and CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. "It's time to broaden the Ring of Fire conversation to include all of Ontario, not just the Far North."

The study shows that the Ring of Fire will generate significant revenue for governments, to the tune of $1.95 billion within the first 10 years of its development. The authors call on the provincial and federal governments to design and fund a plan to address inadequate transportation infrastructure in the Ring of Fire, which is cited as a significant barrier to development.

"Real progress on the Ring of Fire is very important to the people of Ontario," says Doug Morrison, President and CEO of the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation. "And there is a strong business case for governments to invest in this economic opportunity. We think the federal government has an obligation to be actively involved in this development, as it has for other transformative projects including the oil sands, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and Churchill Falls."

Additional highlights from study include:

Within the first 10 years of its development, the Ring of Fire will:

  • generate up to $9.4 billion in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Ontario
  • generate up to $6.2 billion for Ontario's mining industry
  • sustain up to 5,500 jobs annually (full time equivalents) in Ontario
  • generate nearly $2 billion in government revenue, divided between the federal, provincial, and municipal governments.

Within the first 32 years of its development, the Ring of Fire will generate more than $25 billion in economic activity across numerous sectors in Ontario, of which mining is just one:

  • $2.7 billion in revenues for the financial services sector
  • $1.2 billion for the wholesale and retail trade sectors
  • $600 million for the manufacturing sector
  • $500 million for the utilities sector

Read Beneath the Surface: Uncovering the Economic Potential of Ontario's Ring of Fire: http://www.occ.ca/portfolio/beneath-the-surface-uncovering-the-economic-potential-of-ontarios-ring-of-fire/

SOURCE Ontario Chamber of Commerce

For further information: Neville McGuire, Manager of Communications, Ontario Chamber of Commerce, e. nevillemcguire@occ.on.ca, t. 416.482.5222 ext. 2410