A survey by the Fraser Institute in Canada has claimed Ontario is a 'laggard' among Canadian provinces in the time it takes to approve mining exploration permits.
A survey of mining executives across the globe found that Ontario needs to expedite permit approvals and provide transparency and certainty in the overall permitting process.
Respondents indicated that they were waiting longer to receive their permits in Ontario compared with other provinces such as British Columbia (BC) and Quebec.
Northwest Territories and Nunavut also need to improve, while Saskatchewan takes less time to approve permits.
Of the respondents, 87% said that Saskatchewan performed well and gave necessary permits in six months or less.
This compares to 80% of respondents in BC, 76% in Quebec, and only 64% in Ontario.
Ontario had the highest percentage of respondents, with 25% who found that the time to permit approval was too long.
Ontario's 68% of respondents said that permit times had lengthened. This was greater than the 52% of respondents in Quebec and 40% in BC.
When asked to indicate how often governments met their own established timelines for permit approval decisions, 53% of the respondents in Saskatchewan said that government met its approval timelines more than 80% of the time.
This compares to 38% in BC, 28% in Quebec, and 22% in Ontario.
The report concluded that there is much room for improvement in Canada's provinces and territories when it comes to approving permits.
Image: Respondents indicated that they were waiting longer to receive their permits in Ontario. Photo: courtesy of Fraser Institute.