Mines (Regulatory)

Exploration and Mining Guide


Land Acquisition

In Manitoba, you'll find dispositions giving you not only the exclusive right to explore for Crown minerals, but designed to encourage exploration activity and effective investment management. There are two ways to acquire exploration and/or mining rights to Crown lands: Mineral Exploration Licences (MELs) and mining claims. Separate arrangements must be made with the owner(s) of private surface rights or legal occupants of Crown land before any surface exploration activities take place.

Content Links:

Mineral Exploration Licences (MELs)
Reducing Your Licence Area
From Exploration Licence to Mining Claim
Staking a Claim(s) in Surveyed Territory
Staking a Claim(s) in Unsurveyed Territory
Recording a Claim(s) in an Unsurveyed Territory
Terms Applying to All Claims
Grouping Claims
Working with the Requirements
Mineral Disposition & Mineral Lease Transfers
Related Acts & Regulations

 

Mineral Exploration Licence

Applications for a mineral exploration licence may be made at any time of the year. Manitoba is divided into Zones A and B. The location of your licence will determine what type of licence is issued. Licences in the two zones have different terms and conditions.

Zone A Licence

Size: 5,000 to 50,000 hectares excluding any prior lease or mineral disposition.

Term: Three years with an option to renew it for an additional three year term as long as the annual work requirement for each year is achieved and a statement of expenditures and a work report is submitted annually. A licence can be surrendered at any time provided the work commitment for the year in which the surrender is made has been met.

Zone B Licence

Size: 5,000 to 100,000 hectares excluding any prior lease or mineral disposition.

Term: Five years with an option to renew it for an additional five year term as long as the annual work requirement for each year is achieved and a statement of expenditures and a work report is submitted annually. A licence can be surrendered at any time provided the work commitment for the year in which the surrender is made has been met.

The complete specifications for required work, eligible expenditures and reporting requirements are detailed in Schedule B, Manitoba Regulation 64/92 (Mineral Disposition and Mineral Lease Regulation).

Zones A and B are outlined on the Mineral Exploration Licence map along with areas where licences cannot be applied for.

To Apply:
  • Complete the Application for a Mineral Exploration Licence;
  • Include the $401.00 application fee;
  • Include an outline of the proposed exploration program;
  • Provide a location map outlining the proposed licence area;
  • Include any information to assist the Mining Recorder in determining the boundaries of the licence area;
  • Make sure the area to be held under the licence conforms to the minimum and maximum sizes detailed above.

Send to: For your convenience, mineral exploration licence applications can be filed at any of the Growth, Enterprise and Trade offices listed on the application form.

Turnaround Time: One to two months if not within a Community Interest Zone (CIZ).


Reducing Your Licence Area

The size of a MEL may be reduced at any time.

Advise the Director of Mines, in writing, of your plans to reduce the area of land held.

Your deposit will be returned if all the required work and reporting requirements have been met. If the application to reduce the area is made after the anniversary date, the original required work costs will continue for the next year.

Forward your letter of intent to reduce a licence to any Growth, Enterprise and Trade/Resource Development office.

Turnaround Time: Two weeks.


From Mineral Exploration Licence to Mining Claim

If you're planning to hold exploration rights in the area of the MEL beyond its termination, stake and record any claims following the basic steps outlined under Staking a Claim(s) in Unsurveyed Territory.

An Added Advantage

Up to five years worth of excess credits resulting from work completed under a mineral exploration licence can be transferred to a claim staked as a result of converting the licence to claims.

  • The claim was staked within the permit,
  • The work earning the credits was performed on the claim area.
Mining Claims

In Manitoba, a claim must measure between 16 hectares and approximately 256 hectares whether it's in surveyed or unsurveyed territory.

back to top

Staking a Claim(s) in Surveyed Territory

Claims in surveyed territory are map staked and must comply with the boundaries of existing surveyed land parcels. You are not required to physically mark the claim.

Recording a Claim in Surveyed Territory:

Forward your application and recording fee to any of the Growth, Enterprise and Trade offices listed on the application form.

Turnaround Time: One to two weeks.


Staking a Claim(s) in Unsurveyed Territory

A claim in unsurveyed territory must be physically staked according to the requirements described in Manitoba Mineral Disposition and Mineral Lease Regulation 64/92.

The "Summary of Staking Requirements in Manitoba" outlines the main requirements of the Act and regulations relating to staking and recording a mining claim.

Staking A Fractional Claim

Occasionally, the target is an area of unsurveyed land (less than 16 hectares), which is open for staking, but is situated between existing claims. In this case, a fractional claim can be staked following the normal staking procedures as closely as possible, and some requirements specific to this type of claim, in accordance with Manitoba Regulation 64/92 (Mineral Disposition and Mineral Lease Regulation).


Recording a Claim in Unsurveyed Territory

  • Complete the Application to Record a Mining Claim in Unsurveyed Territory,
  • Include a sketch of the claim,
  • The sketch must include information such as the claim's position relative to topographic features; some known point and adjoining claims if any; the location of the claim posts/cairn and information on each one; the distance between claim posts; location and description of any major features on, or near the claim,
  • If you are submitting applications for more than one claim in the same general area you must submit a composite plan of the claims.

Forward your application and recording fee to any of the Growth, Enterprise and Trade offices listed on the application form.

Turnaround Time: Up to four weeks.

Mining Claim Certificate

The Mining Recorder will issue a certificate(s) showing the recording date for a claim(s) in both surveyed and unsurveyed territory.


Terms Applying to All Claims

Term: Once the claim is recorded, it is in good standing for two years plus 60 days. If all work and reporting requirements are met, then a claim can be renewed annually for an indefinite period of time.

The complete specifications for required work, eligible expenditures, and reporting are described in Schedule B, Manitoba Regulation 64/92 (Mineral Disposition and Mineral Lease Regulation).

Reducing a Claim
(Surveyed and Unsurveyed Territory)

Claims in good standing, that are larger than 16 hectares, can be reduced anytime after the first anniversary of the claim.

To reduce a claim you must treat it as a new claim and follow the appropriate staking and recording procedures for either surveyed or unsurveyed territory. The anniversary date for the new claim will be the same as the original claim being reduced.

Remember if the application to reduce the area is made after the anniversary date, the original work commitment costs continue for the next year.

Turnaround Time: One week.


Grouping Claims

This option offers added flexibility in managing the costs associated with holding a number of contiguous claims.

Grouping claims lets you apply work completed on a claim to any one, or more, of the claims of the same group as long as all claims are in good standing. You can, for example, apply all the credits accrued on one claim against the required work associated with several others. Another option: apply credits built-up over a number of years to specific claims within the group where activity does not meet the required level of work.

To Apply:

Send to: Any of the Growth, Enterprise and Trade offices listed on the application form.

Turnaround Time: One week.

back to top

Working with the Requirements

Meeting the work requirements of all dispositions can be done on an annual basis, or through two additional means. An over-accumulation of credits in one year can be applied against the required work of the next year, or for as many years as the amount accrued meets the minimum work required.

If the necessary work has not been completed, a cash payment equal to the work commitment of that year may be made to keep the disposition in good standing. If the work is completed and reported within five years, you can apply to have your cash refunded. If the work is not completed within that time period the cash payment is forfeited. Complete the Application to Report and Apply Required Work and Allocation of Required Work Credits.

Making Your Work Count For More

You may include the following as part of your required work report:

  • Work completed after you've finished the staking of the claim and work done between the time the claim was finished and the time it was submitted for recording.
  • A percentage of the costs of doing an airborne survey, or a regional geological or geochemical survey over an "un-disposed" area if performed within the year prior to the date of issue of the claim certificate. The survey costs which can be credited as required work are to be based on the following formula: (4 x A x B)/C
  • Where: A = total survey cost
    B = area of claim in hectares
    C = area of survey in hectares
To Apply:

Submit this information as part of the required work report (see Terms Applying to All Claims) to any Growth, Enterprise and Trade/Resource Development office.



Mineral Disposition and Mineral Lease Transfers

Mineral disposition(s) can be transferred between: individuals; companies; or individuals and companies. If the new title holder is a company, that organization must be registered to do business in Manitoba.

To Apply:

Make sure the various authorized agents involved in the transfer have signed the form and include the following information:

  • a copy of excerpts from the company's general by-laws demonstrating the signing authority of the officers involved in the transfer.
  • In the case of a mineral lease, the original lease document must accompany the application to transfer.

Forward the application and fees to any of the Growth, Enterprise and Trade offices listed on the application form.

When a corporation is transferring a mineral lease, the consent of the Minister is needed before the application to transfer is filed.

To obtain consent of Minister, forward a letter asking for the Minister's consent to transfer the lease from the present holder to the new holder. This letter can accompany the application to transfer.

Turnaround Time: One week for a claim, three weeks if the consent of minister is required.

As a Result: The Mining Recorder will send a copy of the transfer to the new holder certifying the transfer has been recorded.

Related Acts & Regulations

back to top