– – – $3-million Investment Doubles Funding Levels: Minister Chomiak
The Mineral Exploration Assistance Program (MEAP), which delivers financial assistance to companies carrying out mineral exploration in Manitoba, will invest $3 million in 2014-15 to support 22 new projects, Mineral Resources Minister Dave Chomiak announced today.
“Doubling our investment will have a positive effect on mineral exploration and development in Manitoba,” said Minister Chomiak. “We are attracting new companies exploring here for the first time, creating good jobs for Manitobans, especially in northern communities.”
This year, MEAP will provide assistance of up to 40 per cent for approved eligible expenses to a maximum of $200,000 per recipient, per fiscal year. MEAP provides up to 50 per cent of approved eligible expenses to encourage exploration in under-explored frontier regions including the northern superior, Far North and Hudson Bay lowland areas, and those areas where new discoveries can help sustain existing communities, such as Lynn Lake and Leaf Rapids. Three of the 22 projects receiving funding this year are in Lynn Lake and Leaf Rapids, and three are in frontier regions.
Minister Chomiak noted for every $1 million the Manitoba government invests in financial assistance, up to $8 million is generated for the Manitoba economy through exploration expenditures. The 22 projects receiving funding this year are expected to generate $20.8 million, he added.
“Increased exploration activity boosts local economies, contributes to the province’s geosciences knowledge base and identifies potential mines,” said Minister Chomiak. “Three of this year’s projects involve companies exploring in Manitoba for the first time and these companies have been attracted in part by financial assistance from the province.”
Since MEAP’s first offering in 1995, the province has invested $29.7 million in new mineral exploration. Over $250 million in exploration expenditures have been reported and 782 exploration projects have been completed.