Canada’s top mining even attracts thousands

pdac 2016

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They say that if you only have the time or opportunity to attend one mining investment show each year, make sure you mark PDAC’s annual event on your calendar.

The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) brings together visitors, companies and organizations interested in Canada’s mineral exploration and development industry during its annual convention, trade show and investors exchange. Held over the course of several days, the convention features opportunities to meet hundreds of exhibitors and attend any number of technical sessions, short courses and networking events.

This year, the event drew more than 22,000 attendees from over 100 countries to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from March 6-9. The crowd was a diverse one, made up of investors, analysts, mining executives, geologists, government officials and students.

“The mineral exploration and mining industry has been facing an array of economic challenges the past several years but the sector continues to demonstrate its resiliency,” said PDAC President Rod Thomas in a press release. “The mood throughout the convention was optimistic and upbeat — a positive sign for the sector going forward.” He pointed to new money coming into the industry, favourable market trends and a move to drive new and sustainable solutions to mining activities as signs that the industry is headed in the right direction.

The inaugural International Mines Ministers Summit (IMMS) was a highlight of this year’s convention, led by Jim Carr, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, and attended by 16 national mines ministers from around the world. The summit brought the international mining community together to discuss ways to resolve issues affecting the industry.

“It is important that the PDAC builds strong working relationships not only with provincial and federal governments in Canada, but also with international governments to ensure the mineral industry continues to succeed and grow both in Canada and internationally,” said PDAC Executive Director Andrew Cheatle in a press release.

Celebrating its 84th year, the PDAC Convention kicked off with a series of short courses that ranged from best practices in mineral exploration to risk analysis for mining. An expansive choice of seminars touched on many topics, including corruption and bribery, preparing for a market rebound, global resources for the future, artisanal mining and sustainability, among others. There was a strong international flavour to the lineup, featuring presentations from countries around the globe. Attendees could learn about mineral resources in South Africa, geological surveys in Ireland, the state of mining in Brazil and the impact of China on commodity prices.

The Toronto Stock Exchange and TSX Venture Exchange opened and closed the market from the TMX booth on the Investors Exchange floor with the help of delegations from around the world.

Though PDAC offers a wealth of educational opportunities to exhibitors and attendees alike, the convention is also a great place to network and socialize with others in the industry. This year brought back an important industry fundraiser — the ninth annual Mining Matters Hockey Tournament, which aims to educate students, teachers and the public about earth science and the importance of mineral resources. Additional events like the Trade Show & Trade Show North, Investors Exchange, Mining Marketplace and Prospectors Tent all encouraged attendees to catch up with their industry peers and discover the latest happenings in the mining sector.

One of the most outstanding attractions this year was a selection of minerals from the Kirwin Collection on display in Trade Show North. Part of the Royal Ontario Museum, the one-of-a-kind collection — comprised of about 25,000 ores and minerals — was brought over from Thailand in 2015 and is a testament to years of gathering by geologist Douglas Kirwin. Visitors also had a chance to view an assortment of rough, cut and polished De Beers Canadian diamonds.

Interested in attending next year’s show? PDAC 2017 is scheduled for March 5-8 in Toronto. For more information, visit

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