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Harper Government and World Economic Forum Committed to Improving Prosperity in Developing Countries Through Responsible Resource Development

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 03/02/13 -- As part of Canada's commitment to stimulate sustainable economic growth and reduce poverty in developing countries, the Harper Government partnered with the World Economic Forum to host the "Maximizing the Value of Extractives for Development" conference. The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation, co-hosted the event that brought together Canadian and international leaders to discuss how the responsible development of natural resources can bolster the effectiveness of international assistance and support sustainable economic growth in the developing world.

"The Harper Government is committed to increasing the effectiveness of our international assistance by ensuring our investments result in tangible and sustainable solutions for those who are most in need around the world," said Minister Fantino. "A responsibly-managed extractive sector can foster sustainable economic growth, create jobs, and have a lasting positive impact on families and their communities."

"The World Economic Forum is pleased to partner with the Government of Canada on this important multi-stakeholder event," said Mr. Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum. "The equitable development of the extractives sector is critical for the continued social and economic development of many communities. Collaboration between business, government, international organizations, and civil society is key to ensuring responsible mineral development."

This one-day conference precedes the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada's Annual International Convention and brings together Canadian and international companies in the extractives sector, including Vale and Teck as well as ministers from the governments of Ethiopia and Peru. Civil society organizations including the World University Service of Canada and Agenda Publica of Brazil also participated at the conference. It includes panel discussions on maximizing the development value of mining; harnessing mining investments for development; and capitalizing on resource wealth.

"Ethiopia's mining sector is growing in importance and revenues from this sector are needed to further our development goals," said Ms. Sinkinesh Ejigu, Minister of Mines, Ethiopia, who addressed the conference. "Canada is working with us to help Ethiopia achieve sustainable social and economic benefits from the sector."

Conference attendees discussed the role that mining investments can play in developing local, regional and national economies and how the development value of mining can be maximized. Participants also worked to identify the processes and institutions that are required to successfully manage the development of extractive resources to reduce poverty and advance broad-based local and national growth, as well as to compare various extractive resource development strategies and approaches in other countries.

To find out more about the Canada's work with the extractives sector, visit CIDA's Web page on natural resources management.


The high-level global conference "Maximizing the Value of Extractives for Development" was co-hosted by the Canadian International Development Agency and the World Economic Forum. This event preceded the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada's Annual International Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange (March 3-6, 2013, in Toronto). It engaged approximately 200 representatives from government, industry and civil society to discuss the role of the extractive sector in sustainable development.

The objectives of the conference were to:

--  Discuss how the development value of mining can be maximized.

--  Discuss the role that mining investments can play in developing local,
    regional and national economies.

--  Identify the processes and institutions that are required to
    successfully manage the development of extractive resources in order to
    reduce poverty and advance broad-based national growth. 

--  Discuss extractive resource development strategies and approaches
    adopted by other countries and how they compare.

This one-day conference included moderated panel discussions on the following three topics:

1.  Maximizing the development value of mining

The value of mining is not just in the investment made to develop a mine or the price of the minerals produced, it can have a ripple effect on the economy. This panel discussed how responsible mining requires good governance while producing the revenues required to support well-governed institutions, which are necessary prerequisites to achieve most other development results.

2.  Harnessing mining investments for development

The mining sector mobilizes enormous long-term investments in very specific areas, resulting in significant infrastructure development, as well as the purchase of a wide variety of goods and services. This panel looked at how extractive sector investments and purchases can play a greater role in developing the local and national economy.

3.  Capitalizing on resource wealth

Possessing a rich natural resource endowment is not enough to guarantee positive outcomes. This panel examined the processes and institutions required to successfully manage the development of mineral resources to reduce poverty and advance broad-based national growth.

Panel participants included:

--  The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation,
--  Britt Banks, Adjunct Professor, University of Colorado, and Chair, World
    Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Responsible Mineral Resources
--  Sinkinesh Ejigu, Minister of Mines, Ethiopia 
--  Pierre Gratton, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Mining
    Association of Canada 
--  Anthony Hodge, President, International Council on Mining and Metals 
--  Rafael Benke, Global Head Corporate Affairs, Vale 
--  Chris Eaton, Executive Director, World University Service of Canada 
--  The Honourable Jorge Humberto Merino Tafur, Minister of Mines and
    Energy, Peru 
--  Bernhard Klein, Head - Department of Mining and Engineering, University
    of British Columbia 
--  Scott Gilmore, President, Anchor Chain 
--  Virginia Flood, Vice-President, Rio Tinto, Canada

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