Companies listed on TSX and TSXV have invested billions of dollars in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Australia, Europe, the U.S. and the U.K. TSX and TSXV listed companies in the mining industry alone have raised $1.9 billion for projects in Latin America and another $1.7 billion for investments in Africa.
“Canadian companies are some of the most globally active,” observe Joseph Ingram and Karin Lissakers in an article published last year in The Globe and Mail. “More than 1,000 Canadian exploration companies work in more than 100 countries, from Mongolia to Peru to Tanzania,” say Ingram, president of the North-South Institute in Ottawa, and Lissakers, former president of the Revenue Watch Institute in New York.
These investments not only enhance opportunities to add value for their shareholders, they also contribute to local economies and create jobs for thousands of employees from local communities.
Platinum Group Metals Ltd. (TSX:PTM), for example, has invested more than $50 million in a drilling program in the Northern Bushveld of South Africa. In the project’s early stages, 30% of the company’s employees were hired locally. When the mine is fully developed, it will employ about 2,300 people.
“We have a responsibility to the communities in which we operate,” says R. Michael Jones, Platinum Group’s President. “It is critical that we search for opportunities for these people to gain from the regional benefits that may accrue from our activities.”
In addition to local employment, the taxes and royalties that Canadian companies pay to host countries have the potential to transform economies. In resource-rich countries such as Botswana, Chile and Malaysia, natural resource revenues paid to governments can be invested in roads, health care and education, as well as business development and social services.