Resource sector collapsing under Horgan and NDP: Shypitka
Kootenay East MLA and Opposition Critic for Energy and Mines Tom Shypitka is anticipating further job loss in the resource sector following an announcement by Teck Resources that it intends to lay off 500 workers in the midst of further economic uncertainty in British Columbia.
“Teck Resources is the largest private sector employer in B.C.’s coal industry and news of the layoffs comes in the face of further economic uncertainty generated by a government with a spending problem and no economic plan,” said Shypitka. “The forest industry has already collapsed and we are now seeing confidence plummet in the mining sector under the watch of John Horgan and the NDP.”
Teck Resources operates five active coal mines in Canada with four located in the Elk Valley. One operation in Tumbler Ridge and another near Sparwood are currently shuttered. Amidst a substantial drop in commodity prices, mine workers are finding no re-assurance this government will introduce any measures in the form of tax relief to make the industry more competitive.
“The vast majority of B.C.’s exports are in the resource sector, and without an economic plan to weather an expected slowdown in the global economy, we are going to see more layoffs in mining, forestry and all the industries that support the resource sector,” Shypitka added. “All of Teck’s active mines are located in Kootenay East and this is devastating news for my communities.”
Declining coal revenues also pose a significant risk to the NDP budget. A $20 US drop in the average steelmaking coal price can result in a $50 to $70 million drop in tax revenue for the government, he pointed out in a news release today (Oct. 24).
Lead image: Fording River Mine near Elkford. e-KNOW file photo