Supply Chain & Downstream Markets

Opportunities for Regional Businesses

Procurement of Products & Services From Northwest BC in 2019 (Millions)
Total: $333.5

Northwest BC has a long history of mining and other resource industries, and Pretivm has always been committed to supporting the regional economy by using local businesses for supplies and services. In 2019, we spent $333.5 million on procurement of products and services, of which $39.7 million went to businesses based in Northwest BC, including those located in Smithers, Terrace, Stewart, the Hazeltons, and including Indigenous-owned businesses. We look to local suppliers when sourcing food, fuel, waste services, office supplies, vehicles and equipment, trades, and specialized environmental services.  

As the Brucejack Mine transitioned to full mine production in 2018, Pretivm’s reliance on on-site contractors decreased as we built our in-house capacity to support the mine operations. However, we still have a number of contractors providing specialized services, most notably for underground mining, healthcare, and site security. These contractors are all based in BC, and Pretivm works with each company to support local hiring through these contracts, and requires monthly reports on the number of Indigenous workers and workers from Northwest BC. Pretivm reviews these reports and, when necessary, will engage with our contractors to identify measures to better support local and Indigenous hiring.

Some of the key contractors that we work with at the Brucejack Mine are:

We also work with a number of other suppliers and service providers from Northwest BC and elsewhere in BC, that provide off-site services including telecommunications, travel, utilities, construction, and environmental and engineering services. In 2019, Pretivm held vendor contracts with businesses in communities including Smithers, Terrace, Stewart, Kitimat, Hazelton, Telkwa, Kitwanga, Dease Lake, Laxgalts'ap, Gitlaxt’aamiks, and Prince Rupert. These contracts generate indirect employment and revenue for local businesses. More information about local procurement highlights and employment through contractors is provided in Our Workforce and Contractors. 

Setting a High Standard in Our Supply Chain

We understand the value that local supply and service contracts can bring to local businesses and communities, and actively work with local and Indigenous suppliers to identify opportunities and clarify requirements. Pretivm has strong requirements for health and safety and environmental performance, and these requirements protect our workers, contractors, communities, and surrounding environment. We evaluate new and existing suppliers in terms of their environmental and safety performance so that we are confident that they will work to Pretivm’s high standards. When considering new suppliers, we also look for the involvement of local and Indigenous businesses, and this is a key factor we consider when awarding major contracts.

As part of our commitment to high environmental, safety, and social standards, Pretivm works with contractors to improve performance when we identify deficiencies. In 2019, this included working with contractors to improve occurence of spills and spill response specific to contractor vehicles at the site and along our access road, and requiring monthly reports on local and Indigenous hiring.

Downstream Markets

The Brucejack Mine produces both doré and flotation concentrate, which contain gold and silver. We ship the doré bars to precious metal refineries worldwide, where they are processed into refined gold and silver for sale, and we sell the concentrate to international smelters or traders. We use 23-tonne bulk containers to transport the concentrate from the Brucejack Mine to the Port of Stewart, located in Stewart, BC. From the port, the concentrate is loaded onto bulk carrier vessels. These ships travel 130 kilometres along the Portland Canal to the Pacific Ocean, transporting the concentrate to smelters in Asia and Europe.

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Highlight Story

Economic Benefits of BC’s Mining Supply Chain

A recent study by the Mining Association of BC (MABC) highlighted the economic activity generated by mining operations in the province in 2018. Findings of the study, based on data from 2018, included:

  • Mining and smelting generated $12.3 billion in economic activity in BC, supporting over 33,000 direct and indirect jobs, and contributing almost $1 billion in direct payments to the provincial government to support healthcare, education, and public services British Columbians rely on.
  • The industry—including 17 metal and steelmaking coal mines and two smelters—purchased $2.9 billion worth of materials, goods, and services from 3,730 BC businesses in 215 urban, rural and Indigenous communities in 2018.
  • 120 Indigenous-affiliated mine suppliers provided materials, goods, and services to BC’s mining industry in 2018, valued at $265 million. These businesses are associated with 25 Indigenous Nations or Indigenous Development Corporations.
  • BC’s mining industry provided $6.5 million in community investments to approximately 340 organizations in 50 municipalities and Indigenous communities in 2018.

As one of the operating mines in the province in 2018, Pretivm contributed to the value highlighted in this study and has continued to significantly contribute to the provincial economy in 2019. Further information is provided by MABC.