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OTTAWA, Sept. 30, 2011 /CNW/ - As recognized by the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Round Tables on the Extractive Sector, strengthening community capacity and governance is a key strategy to ensuring benefits from resource extraction are maximized both domestically and abroad.  CIDA's implementation of the Andean Regional Initiative (ARI) for Promoting Effective Corporate Social Responsibility announced by Minister Oda yesterday helps to do this in three countries that receive significant Canadian foreign direct investment from the mining sector.

Support for these 3 pilot projects reflects an important policy decision that recognizes that mining can make a significant difference in the lives of local communities and that mines can do so more effectively when they partner with development aid agencies that have experience in community development in the developing world. MAC's President and CEO Pierre Gratton said: "Government support for these three pilot projects is thus significant not just for what they will do but for the policy signal they represent."

"With operations in countries and communities around the globe, MAC member companies are agents of social and economic development, they are also ambassadors for Canada - each year they invest millions into a wide range of programs in host countries, ranging from health care and education to infrastructure and governance.  The Government of Canada's Andean Regional Initiative is recognition of the important role that mining activity plays in capacity development and improvement for host countries in the developing world.  Financial support from the Government of Canada will further augment the positive impact of our members' activities."

Canada's mining sector is one of the country's most significant investors abroad.  Canadian direct investment abroad by mining companies in 2010 represented over $56 Billion.

MAC encourages the federal government to continue its support for Canada's CSR Strategy.

About the Mining Association of Canada

Based in Ottawa, the Mining Association of Canada is the national organization for the Canadian mining industry. Its members are engaged in mineral exploration, mining, smelting, refining and semi-fabrication.

For further information:

Paul Hébert


Mining Association of Canada