Where to Find

The platinum group metals (PGMs) are six metallic elements that have similar physical and chemical properties and that tend to occur together in the same mineral deposits. They are:

  • platinum
  • palladium
  • rhodium
  • ruthenium
  • osmium
  • iridium

 Key facts

  • In 2017, Canada was the third largest producer of mined PGMs
  • The United States accounted for close to 70% of Canada’s exports of PGMs in 2017
  • Recycling of materials made with PGMs accounts for more than 28% of the global supply

Production

In 2016, Canada mined an estimated 903,000 troy ounces of PGMs in concentrate. While Canada does not refine PGMs domestically, the metals are recovered from eight operating mines located in four Canadian provinces: Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, Ontario and Manitoba.

This bar graph shows Canada’s annual mine production of PGMs from 2008 to 2017. Production was estimated at 732,000 troy ounces in 2008 and 903,000 troy ounces in 2017.

International context

An estimated 18.4 million troy ounces of PGMs were supplied from mined and recycled sources in 2017.

Find out more about mined PGMs production on an international scale:

World mine production of platinum group metals, by country, 2017

This bar graph shows the world’s annual production of PGMs from 2008 to 2017. Production was 16.9 million troy ounces in 2008 and 18.4 million troy ounces in 2017.

In 2017, estimates of the total world reserves were 69,000 tonnes.

World reserves of platinum group metals, by country, 2017

Ranking Country Tonnes Percentage of total
1 South Africa 63,000 91.3%
2 Russia 3,900 5.7%
3 Zimbabwe 1,200 1.7%
4 United States 900 1.3%
5 Canada 310 0.4%
Other countries N/A N/A
Total 69,000 100.0%

Source: Natural Resources Canada
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