INN sat down with the president of PDAC to talk about the convention and some of the challenges it faced this year.
Canceling or rescheduling the world’s largest mining convention were both strongly considered as countries around the world continue to register cases of COVID-19.
Felix Lee, president of the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC), told the Investing News Network the decision to go ahead was not made lightly. As it stands, there have been 3,249 deaths attributed to the respiratory virus and close to 100,000 infected globally.
“I would be lying if I said that we didn’t consider (canceling the show), we definitely did,” said Lee.
The convention did have health and safety protocols in place, including the addition of hand sanitizer to swag bags and dedicated janitorial staff steadily wiping down escalator railings.
“In the lead up to the convention and certainly with the news of the coronavirus spreading, it was incumbent on us really to be very proactive in ensuring we took all precautionary measures,” Lee said. “We’re monitoring (World Health Organization) directives, public health agency of Canada directives.”
Despite the growing number of cases worldwide, the risk in Toronto is still relatively low according to the city’s public health office, noted Lee, who was pleasantly surprised by the number of convention participants during the first two days of the show.
“This morning we continue to see attendees coming in the registration lines,” said Lee on Monday (March 2). “So I’m cautiously optimistic at this point that we’re good.” By the end of the fourth and final day, PDAC had reported a total of 23,144 attendees.
In addition to constantly monitoring the various health agencies, Lee also addressed protesters who blocked access to the convention’s Front Street entrance on Sunday (March 1).
“Ultimately what the convention is about is bringing people together to voice different opinions, share ideas,” he said. “We acknowledge that there are a lot of different opinions out there and as long as people are willing to voice their opinions to share their ideas or share their thoughts in a peaceful manner they’re always welcome here at PDAC.”
To hear more from Lee regarding PDAC and some of the metals that were showcased at the four day event, watch the video above. You can also click here for our full PDAC playlist.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Georgia Williams, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Editorial Disclosure: The Investing News Network does not guarantee the accuracy or thoroughness of the information reported in the interviews it conducts. The opinions expressed in these interviews do not reflect the opinions of the Investing News Network and do not constitute investment advice. All readers are encouraged to perform their own due diligence.