Responsible mineral exploration is possible only through building and sustaining respectful, open, and long-lasting relationships built on trust and mutual understanding. As the largest private sector employer of Indigenous peoples in remote communities, the mineral exploration and mining industry is uniquely positioned to support efforts toward reconciliation.

AME works with Indigenous groups to enable dialogue and understanding and to build the positive relationships that are integral to successful resource development. AME is recognized as a leader in Indigneous relations and community engagement for the mineral exploration industry. AME was an early advocate in recommending that governments share tax revenue generated from mining directly with local First Nations. British Columbia was the first province in Canada to introduce mineral resource revenue sharing on new mining projects, and has placed a strong focus on community development to assist First Nations in achieving their social and economic goals.

AME is a founding partner of the BC Regional Mining Alliance, a northwest regional partnership between Indigenous groups, industry and provincial government representatives.

Guiding Principles

The Association for Mineral Exploration (AME) recognizes that building and fostering respectful and sustainable relationships with Indigenous groups is good corporate practice, supports the principles of reconciliation and will assist its members with undertaking exploration.

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In conducting their activities, AME members should strive to:

  • Respect existing and asserted Aboriginal rights and title and treaty rights of Indigenous peoples.
  • Work proactively and continuously with Indigenous groups to build mutually beneficial relationships that advance reconciliation and that are based on trust, transparency, mutual respect and recognition.  
  • Respect the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). Seek Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) wherever possible.
  • Engage early and frequently with Indigenous groups. Be responsive to concerns raised and transparent about activities that may affect Indigenous values and interests.  
  • Incorporate local and/or traditional Indigenous knowledge into socio-environmental studies and management plans. Be respectful of the nature of such information and maintain confidentiality when requested.
  • Provide potentially affected Indigenous groups with timely and accessible information needed to encourage open, meaningful and inclusive dialogue.
  • Respect the diversity of interests and cultures and traditions between Indigenous groups. Respect their diverse views towards land and its resources.
  • Encourage governments to carry out their duty to consult and accommodate in a manner that reasonably balances existing and asserted Aboriginal and treaty rights of Indigenous people with the interests of AME members.


Early Engagement Planning Tool

AME is pleased to release an Early Engagement Planning Tool to help mineral explorers develop an effective plan for engagement with Indigenous peoples in British Columbia. The tool consists of 14 questions to answer that once complete will generate a PDF report that provides a wide range of tips, guidance and tools for undertaking early engagement with Indigenous groups.

The questions are broadly divided into three categories that help explorers to:

  • Develop an understanding of the Indigenous groups to engage with
  • Prepare the company for early engagement with Indigenous groups
  • Implement early engagement activities

If you have any feedback or questions, please feel free to get in touch at [email protected]

AME’s Indigenous Engagement Guidebook

AME’s new Indigenous Engagement Guidebook was released in fall 2020. This guidebook intends to provide mineral explorers and developers working in BC with the context and understanding to effectively create open and strong relationships that can lead to successful delivery of exploration and resource development projects. Proudly sponsored by Seabridge Gold.

Explore by Location

Explore by Location is a provincial service that includes contact details for local First Nations for any area of BC.