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Ontario Strengthening Critical Minerals Supply Chain

May 7, 2024

Ontario Strengthening Critical Minerals Supply Chain

Additional funding for critical minerals projects will support innovation in the mining sector, helping create jobs

The Ontario government is investing an additional $15 million over three years to expand the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund (CMIF). The funding was part of the 2024 Budget: Building a Better Ontario and will strengthen Ontario’s mining industry by assisting with research, development, and commercialization of innovative technologies, processes, and solutions for the critical minerals supply chain.

“This investment is another milestone for our government’s Critical Minerals Strategy and is about building a made-in-Ontario supply chain to meet the increasing global demand for critical minerals needed to manufacture technologies like batteries and electric vehicles,” said George Pirie, Minister of Mines. “We know investments like this drive innovation, help solve mining and supply chain challenges, enhance our province’s competitive advantage and leverages Ontario’s highly educated and experienced workforce.”

This CMIF investment will encourage more private-public collaboration and partnerships with Indigenous communities or businesses to develop new technologies. The funding will also drive economic growth and create job opportunities in Ontario’s mining sector.

“Ontario is rewarding world-class leadership in the province’s mining sector with this additional investment in the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund, which is strengthening regional economies while building a better Ontario,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, Minister of Finance. “Investments like this are part of our plan to help the province’s workers, businesses, municipalities and Indigenous communities benefit from jobs, prosperity and opportunity for years to come.”

This $15 million commitment is part of the government’s plan to build an integrated supply chain that connects the mineral wealth in the north with the manufacturing might of the south. Critical minerals projects supported through the CMIF highlight that Ontario has the mineral resources and industry expertise to be a world leader in the critical minerals sector.

The Critical Minerals Innovation Fund is open to companies and partnerships between companies and Indigenous communities, academics, or non-profit organizations. Applications for the fund are being accepted from May 22 to July 17, 2024. For more information, please visit this link.

Quick Facts

  • In November 2022, the Ontario government launched the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund as part of the Critical Minerals Strategy. The strategy celebrated its two-year anniversary in March 2024.
  • To date, the CMIF fund has invested in 12 industry-led, including Indigenous-owned, critical minerals innovation projects.
  • CMIF supports Ontario-based projects across the critical minerals supply chain – from mining and mineral processing to the recovery and recycling of minerals.
  • Funding provided by CMIF supports eligible project costs, with grants of up to $500,000 covering a maximum of 50 per cent.
  • The program is open to private-sector businesses or private sector businesses collaborating with a public sector academic or research institution/non-profit organization or association working in the critical mineral sector with a project in Ontario.


“With more than $43 billion in new investments in electric vehicle and EV battery manufacturing over the last three years, unlocking the wealth of critical minerals found throughout Ontario’s North is an essential component in building up our province’s fully integrated, end-to-end EV supply chain. This new investment in the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund reaffirms our government’s commitment to ensuring that the vehicles of the future will be made and powered by a combination of Ontario talent, research, tech and materials.”

– Vic Fedeli
Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade

“The development of critical minerals in Ontario is really a story about northern prosperity. Across government, we have strengthened partnerships and made strategic investments to ensure we have the legacy infrastructure in place to support the opportunities ahead.”

– Greg Rickford
Minister of Northern Development and Minister of Indigenous Affairs

“This investment underscores the importance of research, development and technology commercialization and reinforces the collaborative efforts between government, industry and academia in building and maintaining a strong critical minerals sector in Ontario.”

– Trevor Walker
President and CEO of Frontier Lithium

“Carbonix is now partnering with SGS Lakefield to develop a critical minerals processing demonstration plant at their facility in Lakefield, Ontario. Carbonix will use this facility to process high-sulphur petroleum coke, sourced from refineries in Ontario, into battery-grade graphite materials for Ontario battery manufacturers.”

– Paul Pede
President and CEO of Carbonix

“Ontario’s commitment to invest in the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund in Budget 2024 is the latest in a series of strategic moves to strengthen the province’s economy and its position as the world’s leading mining jurisdiction.”

– Mark Selby
CEO of Canada Nickel

“The CMIF program has been an excellent means of accelerating new processes and technology into the hands of industry partners like Vale.”

– Dr. Nadia Mykytczuk
President and CEO, Mining Innovation Rehabilitation and Applied Research Corporation (MIRARCO)

“Vale Base Metals has benefited from the province’s CMIF by collaborating with Mirarco Mining Innovation on an exciting bioremediation project. The opportunity to extract minerals from mining wastes supports the Company’s circular mining strategy and the responsible, long-term closure of our facilities.”

– Glen Watson
Senior Sustainability Specialist, Vale Base Metals

“We are so pleased to host Minister Pirie for this exciting Critical Minerals Innovation Fund announcement. Dynamic Earth tells the story of Sudbury’s deep-rooted mining history, while also taking visitors through modern mining innovations ensuring that we play a role in shaping the next generation of mining experts and critical minerals are the future of mining.”

– Ashley Larose
CEO of Science North and Dynamic Earth


Related Story

Ontario Investing in the Critical Minerals Supply Chain

The Ontario government is investing over $4 million to help junior mining companies find the mines that will fuel the electric vehicle revolution. Funding through the Ontario Junior Exploration Program (OJEP) is part of the province’s Critical Minerals Strategy to drive long-term economic growth by creating jobs and prosperity, especially in northern and Indigenous communities.

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