Other countries compete in various industry sub-sectors: London is arguably the mining finance centre of the world; South Africa has exceptional mining pedigree; the DRC apparently has more minerals in the ground than any other country; the US is a METS sector leader; and Finland could claim to have the leading risk and legislative framework.
But none of these countries, or any other, is able to offer the complete suite of mining industry components on anything like the scale at which they are offered in Australia and Canada.
What is more difficult to do is separate which of those two countries is better, that is: which country can claim to be the best mining nation in the world?
Both have a proud mining history full of mining booms and big characters, be they miners themselves or promoters and financiers.
Both are naturally disposed to extractive industries with a vast mineral-rich landmass, much of which suffers extreme environmental conditions – Australia’s deserts versus Canada’s Arctic – ensuring a limited populous that might object to digging great big holes.
Both have dynamic and voluminous equity markets providing financial fuel for the industry from the micro-cap through to the majors.
Both offer established and proven mining frameworks enshrined in stable and workable mining codes and supporting legislation. They are also culturally hospitable first-world addresses with abundant and appropriate infrastructure, which keeps risk at a minimum.
And both have subsequently built thriving supporting service industries and technology hubs that have then spread their wings to become international firms.
In each of these key areas – history/pedigree, geology/production, finance/regulation, legislation/risk, and services/technology – Mining Journal has made a considered judgement, where appropriate farming in external expertise.
For the full five-part review, and verdict, go to www.mining-journal.com