The government of Ontario, the Marten Falls First Nation, and the Webequie First Nation have signed an agreement to advance planning and development of a proposed Northern Road Link to access mineral deposits in the remote Ring of Fire region of northern Ontario. Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and Minister of Indigenous Affairs Greg Rickford were joined by Chief Bruce Achneepineskum of the Marten Falls First Nation and Chief Cornelius Wabasse of the Webequie First Nation for a signing ceremony at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in Toronto in early March.

Noront Resources is the dominant holder of mineral lands in the Ring of Fire region, but project development has been long-delayed by lack of all-season road access. Noront completed a feasibility study of its most advanced project — the high-grade Eagle’s Nest nickel-copper-platinum-palladium deposit — in 2012, but development has been stalled since that time.

Premier Ford said, “After 15 years of delay by the previous government, we said we would build a road to the Ring of Fire, and we are working with our incredible partners in the Marten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation to do just that and make sure we do it right. Together, we can bring jobs and prosperity to communities across the Far North. Promises made, promises kept.”