Mining and Exploration in NL


Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) produces high quality metal, non-metal and industrial mineral products sold nationally and internationally. The latest 2016 forecast gross value of mineral shipments for Newfoundland and Labrador is $2.7 billion.


Although the value of mineral shipments declined in 2014, it remained high by historical standards and several mining projects continued to advance (source: Department of Natural Resources, Mines Branch). 


With active metal and non-metal operations and several developing properties, the province has a diversified commodity portfolio with mineral shipments of iron ore, base and precious metals (nickel, copper, zinc and gold), and key industrial minerals (limestone/dolomite and pyrophyllite).


Iron, nickel, and copper constitute the bulk of shipments from NL. Other metals mined include gold, cobalt, silver and zinc. Contributions also come from the industrial minerals sector and construction aggregates. As a province, we have a solid mining base, with demonstrated past success including world-class discoveries at Buchan’s and Voisey’s Bay.


Newfoundland and Labrador currently has six producing metal mines: IOC - iron ore concentrate and dolomite (Carol Project), Labrador Iron Mines (James Mine), Vale - nickel/copper/cobalt (Voisey’s Bay), Tata Steel - DSO iron ore (Schefferville), Rambler Metals & Mining - copper (Ming Mine), Anaconda - gold (Point Rousse/Pine Cove).


Associated processing operations are Rambler Metals & Mining’s Nugget Pond Mill and Vale’s Long Harbour Ni Refinery.


Other non-metal operations include Atlantic Minerals Ltd. - limestone (Lower Cove), and Trinity Resources - pyrophyllite (Manuels Mine),Canada Fluorspar continues to develop the St. Lawrence Project (AGS Project). The central activities to be carried out during the two-year construction phase are site preparation, open pit development, construction of infrastructure, installation of utilities, restoration of temporary work areas, and commissioning. 



Employment in the mining industry has risen 3.3 percent from 2015's 7267 to 7509 person years. (source: Department of Natural Resources, Mines Branch).


Indirect employment would add to these figures, when active local and out-of-province supply and services business and their employment base are factored in. A robust industry with well-paying jobs can sustain communities well into the future. Continued support and expansion of the measures outlined in this brief leads to investment, mine development and employment.


A measure of the significance of the mining industry in Newfoundland and Labrador is that it produces more iron ore than any other jurisdiction in Canada, is second in nickel production only to Ontario and is third in copper production behind Ontario and British Columbia.


The Economic Review 2016 (available as a pdf. below), published by the province's Department of Finance, notes that the mining industry contributed 5.5% to the province's GDP.


To view the full list and placement of major exploration properties in the province, view the pdf. below ("Exploration Properties 2016"). Source: Department of Natural Resources, Mines Branch            


The Department of Natural Resources (Mines Branch) provides an overview of NL's mining industry that includes facts and figures, a review of mines, development projects, and exploration viewable as a pdf. ("Mining in NL - Overview") below. In addition, the Department of Natural Resources (Mines Branch) provides a highlights guidebook related to exploration viewable as a pdf. ("Exploration Highlights 2015") below.


Please visit the Department of Natural Resources Mineral Exploration page for additional documents on environmental guidelines and staking and maintaining claims.