Ontario Cuts A Deal For New Diamond Industry



    McGuinty Government Adds Sparkle To Provincial Economy

    TORONTO, July 4 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    Ontario has taken the next step to expand its new diamond industry.
    As a result of an agreement in principle between the McGuinty government
and De Beers Canada, operator of Ontario's first diamond mine, activities such
as cutting and polishing will be expanded in Ontario.
    The province and De Beers Canada have agreed that 10 per cent of the
Victor Mine's production, by value, will be made available for activities such
as cutting and polishing in Ontario.
    De Beers' Diamond Trading Company will be offering an estimated
$25-million worth of rough stones a year to a designated buyer or buyers,
known as Sightholders. The Sightholder(s) will be chosen through an
international competition, and will be expected to set up processing
operations in Ontario.  Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael
Gravelle will travel to London, England, to promote investment in Ontario at a
meeting of potential Sightholders on July 7.

    QUOTES

    "This agreement opens the door to a vibrant Ontario diamond cluster that
could one day include diamond trading, jewelry manufacturing, marketing,
tourism and other activities," said Northern Development and Mines Minister
Michael Gravelle.

    "De Beers Canada's investment will create a $6.7 billion in GDP economic
impact, contributing to sustainable growth in the First Nation communities of
James Bay, Northeastern Ontario and Ontario," said Jim Gowans, President and
CEO, De Beers Canada.

    QUICK FACTS

    
    -   The Victor Mine is expected to generate more than 400 full-time
        production jobs and approximately 600,000 carats of diamonds a year
        during its 12-year lifespan.

    -   James Bay Aboriginal communities have already benefited from
        construction jobs, direct payments, training programs, infrastructure
        and more than $175 million in joint ventures.

    LEARN MORE

    Read about the operations of De Beers Canada
(http://www.debeerscanada.com/) and the Diamond Trading Company
(http://www.dtc.com/).

    Learn about the Diamond Sector Unit
(http://www.mndm.gov.on.ca/mndm/mines/dg/default_e.asp) of the Ministry of
Northern Development and Mines.

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                                                       ontario.ca/mines-news
                                                      Disponible en français
    





For further information:

For further information: Anne-Marie Flanagan, Minister's Office, (416)
327-0655; Rob Merwin, Diamond Sector Unit, (705) 670-5627

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Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry

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