B.C. Industry Urges Federal Approval for Prosperity Mine

Federal Review Panel submits report to Minister of Environment

VANCOUVER, July 2 /CNW/ - The Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) along with the B.C Chamber of Commerce and the Business Council of British Columbia are asking the federal Cabinet to support the Prosperity mine project now that the federal review panel's report has been completed.

"The panel has reviewed the project but offered no opinion on whether the project should be approved but is instead leaving that decision to the federal Cabinet," says MABC President Pierre Gratton. "We remain confident the federal Cabinet will see the significant benefits of this project and approve its development, just as the provincial government did back in January of this year."

The Prosperity Mine project, located in central B.C. is expected to contribute $340 million dollars annually to provincial GDP, $400 million in provincial revenue and $43 million to local and regional government over the life of the project.

"Given BC's declining trade balance and weak forestry sector, the province needs major new investments like the Prosperity project," added Jock Finlayson of the BC Business Council. "Prosperity is one of the most significant new anchors of economic development available to the province at this time. Federal government approval of Prosperity will be a significant boost for BC's future prospects."

The Independent contractors and Business Association of B.C. agree with those sentiments. "The B.C. construction industry has seen a 25% reduction in employment making an investment like the Prosperity Mine desperately needed to put our people back to work," says Philip Hochstein, President of the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association. "Once up and running the mine will allow others in the community to invest in their homes and businesses which will provide a more secure future for the local construction community. ICBA urges the federal government to approve the Prosperity Mine as quickly as possible so the region can once again grow and prosper."

"Communities like Williams Lake and 100 Mile House are counting on this mine," added John Winter, President of the BC Chamber of Commerce. These communities, suffering the effects of the mountain pine beetle and facing high levels of unemployment and rising bankruptcies, need the economic injection that this mine will bring to the region. On behalf of small business, I urge the federal government to approve Prosperity in a timely manner."

The federal review panel has submitted their report to the federal Minister of Environment who will now take the report, along with several other reports, to the federal cabinet for a final decision.

SOURCE MINING ASSOCIATION OF BC

For further information: For further information: Pierre Gratton, President and CEO, MABC, (604) 681-4321 ext 120, pgratton@mining.bc.ca; John Winter, President and CEO, BC Chamber of Commerce, (604) 376-3577; Jock Finalyson, President, BCBC, 604-696-6585; Philip Hochstein, President, ICBA, 604-561-9402

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MINING ASSOCIATION OF BC

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