The Government of Canada has made significant investments to support the development of critical mineral projects and value chains — from mining to manufacturing, to recycling. Across government, departments are developing a suite of programs that supports all six key focus areas identified in the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy. This includes driving research and innovation throughout the critical mineral value chain, addressing key infrastructure gaps to enable sustainable critical minerals production, harnessing the power of geoscience and data to unlock Canada’s critical mineral potential, and providing major investments in critical minerals projects that grow Canada’s economy.

Explore the programs we have in place to support the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy

Critical Minerals Infrastructure Fund (CMIF)

The CMIF will provide up to $1.5 billion in federal funding over seven years for clean energy and transportation infrastructure projects necessary to enable the sustainable development and expansion of critical minerals in Canada.

Open for applications

The first call for proposals is open, with contribution funding available under two streams:

  1. Preconstruction and project development — for preconstruction activities required to advance projects toward a shovel-ready state
  2. Infrastructure deployment — for shovel-ready projects, including site preparation, construction, rehabilitation or enhancement of infrastructure, as well as capacity-building activities and engagement in support of Indigenous and other impacted communities

Funding available: Up to $300 million in contribution funding with the following limits applicable to projects in both streams —

  • up to $50 million per project for nongovernmental applicants
  • up to $100 million per project for provincial and territorial governments

Deadline: Applications for both streams will be accepted until February 29, 2024, with applications for stream 2 assessed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Learn more and apply

Critical Minerals Research, Development and Demonstration Program (CMRDD)

The CMRDD program helps meet the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy objectives by driving research and innovation, and accelerating project development. CMRDD offers two avenues for support:

  1. Funding for federal research and development (R&D) projects focused on early-stage technology development
  2. Contribution funding for pilot demonstration projects in the pre-commercialization phase

Federal R&D projects

 

Closed for applications

Budget 2022 provided a second wave of funding to advance R&D projects. To align industry needs with Canada’s federal research goals and capabilities, NRCan invited applicants to propose R&D projects that will address specific technical processing challenges in the development of critical minerals.

Support available: In-kind federal R&D support (no direct funding will be provided)

Program timeframe: April 2024 to March 2027

Status: Applications are currently under review

Previous federal R&D funding supported R&D projects led by NRCan’s CanmetMINING and in collaboration with other Canmet laboratories, the Geological Survey of Canada and the National Research Council of Canada. This resulted in 31 projects focused on early-stage technology development. Learn more about the R&D projects underway.

Contribution funding

 

Closed for applications

NRCan provides funding to pilot plants and demonstration projects at technology readiness levels 6–8 to advance technologies that produce key critical minerals and support raw material inputs into priority value chains in Canada.

Wave  2 funding: $40 million (up to $5  million per project)
Status: Applications are currently under review

Wave 1 funding: $14 million
Status: NRCan awarded funding for projects that will see improved capital and/or operating costs of critical mineral production, the production of critical minerals using novel processes and reduced energy or carbon intensity or other environmental performance improvements.

Critical Minerals Geoscience Data (CMGD) Initiative

Closed for applications

The CMGD supports the sustainable development of Canada’s critical mineral resources by providing essential knowledge and data to support informed decision-making. The CMGD provides funding to advance the availability of valuable data and insights on the location, quality and economic feasibility of critical minerals resources. By harnessing the power of geoscience and data, we will pave the way for the responsible growth of industries reliant on these minerals, from technology and energy to defence and infrastructure.

Contribution funding: $10  million (up to $500,000 per project)
Status: Applications are currently under review

Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF)

SIF provides major investments in innovative projects that will help grow Canada's economy for the well-being of all Canadians. As part of the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy, SIF is mandated to support critical minerals projects, mainly in the areas of mineral processing, manufacturing and recycling.

Funding available: $1.5 billion in targeted funds
A minimum of $10 million is available per project to fund projects that meet eligible cost requirements. SIF contribution amounts are repayable by default. While portions may be non-repayable, such amounts would only be considered on a case-by-case basis where significant benefits for Canadians are confirmed.

Deadline: Continuous intake until funds are depleted

Learn more and apply

Explore additional funding and support services from our federal partners

As we develop and launch new funding opportunities specific to critical minerals, the following government programs and services are available to help your business.

Regional Development Programs

Canada’s Regional Development Agencies offer a wide range of financial programs to help regional businesses become more competitive, innovative and productive.

Canada Growth Fund

Investments that catalyze substantial private sector investment in Canadian businesses and projects to help transform and grow Canada’s economy and meet climate policy objectives.

Access financial and advisory support

The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC) offer a range of financing options and advisory services to support Canadian businesses. Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) may also have funding options for critical mineral projects.

Connect with us

Have questions or comments?

Email the Critical Minerals Centre of Excellence at cmce-cemc@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca.
If you would like to meet with one of our team members, please click here to fill out a short questionnaire.

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