Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

In 1897 the United States imposed an import duty on sawn lumber. As a countermeasure, the Canadian Government proposed an export duty on logs and pulpwood to restore the equilibrium of tariff taxation between the unmanufactured logs and the sawed product, and thus favor the manufacture of the raw material in Canada. Along with this proposal a similar one was proposed on certain metals, viz, nickel, copper, lead, and silver. As regards nickel and copper Parliament enacted that “on nickel contained in matte or in the ore, or in any crude or partially manufactured state, and upon copper contained in any matte or ore which also contains nickel, when exported from Canada, an export duty should be levied not exceeding 10 cents per pound on nickel and 2 cents per pound on copper."

These provisions were not to come into effect until proclaimed by the governor in council. This left it optional with the Government to impose the tax or not and no action was taken on the metals, although it was generally realized that the free admission of matte by the United States and the import duty on refined nickel was a handicap to the establishment of a refining industry in Canada.

In the matter of saw logs the Ontario government solved the problem by providing that all timber cut on Crown lands should be manufactured into sawn lumber in Canada. A similar expedient was sought to foster the nickel-refining industry in Canada, but encountered the difficulty that, while timber licenses were granted annually by the Government and the fee grants only the right to cut and dispose of the timber, the nickel ore is extracted from land, the fee simple of which has been granted by the Crown and no requirements as to refining were part of the original contract.

Another attempt was made in 1900 to bring about the home refining of nickel by means of legislative action. An act was passed that provided that no one should carry on the business of mining except under authority of a yearly license issued by the department of lands, forests, and mines. T'he fee for such license should be based on the gross quantities of the ores produced during the previous year. The fee for ores of nickel was to be $10 per

$ ton, or $60 per ton if partly treated or reduced, and for ores of copper and nickel combined $7 per ton, or $50 per ton if partly treated or reduced. To offset these provisions, where ores were refined in Canada so as to yield fine metal, the fees, or part of them, were to be remitted. The right of the Government to regulate matters of trade and commerce was alleged to be interfered with by the act and it was claimed that its provisions practically confiscated the nickel properties. The constitutionality of the law was questioned but never referred to the supreme court and it was never enforced. It was repealed by the mines act of 1906.

In 1907 the Legislature of Ontario decided to try rewards instead of penalties. By the metal-refining bounty act (7 Edward VII, ch. 14) a bounty was provided “on refined metallic nickel or on refined oxide of nickel" at the rate of “6 cents per pound on the free metallic nickel. or on the nickel contained in the nickel oxide." Bounties were also provided for refined metallic copper and copper sulphate, metallic cobalt, and refined cobalt oxide and on arsenic made from mispickel ores. However, it was provided that not more than 860,000 should be paid out in any one year for either nickel or copper. The bounty was set for a term of five years and was later extended for another five-year term, which ended April 30, 1917.

So far as solving the question of refining nickel in Ontario on a large scale the act was not effective. It did stimulate the refining of the nickel and cobalt content of the cobalt ores, but had the entire nickel output for 1916 (83,000,000 pounds) been paid for at 6 cents per pound, nearly $5,000,000 would have been required as against the limit of $60,000 fixed by the act.

THE INTERNATIONAL NICKEL CO.

In the report of the Federal Trade Commission to the United States Senate (1918), the operations of the International Nickel Co. are commented on as follows:

The dominating factor in the nickel industry is the International Wickel ('o., which produces practically the entire output of that metal in this country. The profits of the International Vickel Co. in 1916 were $13,557,000 and the dividends wer $10,575,000, which sums amount to 40 per cent and 31 per cent, respectively, based upon the investment as computed by the commission. Taking the total capitalization and surplus of the company as a basis, the net earnings would be 20 per cent and the dividends 15.6 per cent. In 1917 the profits on the commission's basis were 30 per cont and the dividends 24 per cent, and on the basis claimed by the company the profits were 15 per cent and the dividends 12 per cent.

This company has a natural monopoly based on the ownership of the Canadian mines irom which the nickel ore is derived. It has, however, maintained prices on a prewar basis. ('onsequently, while prices are high and the profits very large, the increase in profits has been due to the increased war output rather than to advances in price. Therefore, it does not seem that any profiteering can be charged unless in a negative sense, that is, the company might have been satisfied with smaller profits in war times. This is ospecially worthy of consideration, inasmuch as practically the entire output of the company is taken for war uses.

COST OF PRODUCTIOX.

(ents.

Nickel from New Caledonia ores cost about 20 cents per pound. Mining of the ore averages $4 per ton. The cost per pound of nickel is about as follows: Value of nickel in ore on shipboard. Freight (normal prewar figures).. Smelting and refining....

6-8 (For many years the French maintained a heavy shipping bounty

a on New Caledonia ores, which enabled them to be brought over at a very low figure. This was discontinued a few years ago and more and more ore is being smelted on the island.)

On account of the complexity of products derived from the Cana dian ores an accurate cost statement can not be prepared. The International Nickel Co. stated to the Ontario Nickel Commission that its profit was 7! cents per pound on refined nickel. With a proper proportioning of accounts, the cost is probably about 15 cents per pound. (Statement of John Patterson), Ontario.)

According to V. X. Hybinette, the cost of refining by his process is $100 to $110 per metric ton on a small scale in Norway. Mining and smelting costs are fairly high because of a limited output. New Caledonia ore with 5 to 6 per cont nickel can be laid down in Norway or England at a cost of about 11 cents per pound of nickel content. The retined product of the French company costs 17 to 18 cents per pound. Cost of Mond process nickel may be as much as 15 cents per pound.”

a

Nickel ( from foreign ores, matte, and unrefined bullion smelted or refined in the United

States)- Production in United States.
(From U. S. Geological Survey, Mineral Resources.)

[blocks in formation]

Nickel (produced as by-product in electrolytic refining of copper) Production in United

States.
[From U.S. Geological Survey, Mineral Resources.)

[blocks in formation]

Refined nickel in metric tons--Production in principal foreign countries.

[blocks in formation]

Total.

20,100

21,500

28,500

Metallgesellschaft (Rept. Ont. Nickel Commission, p. R.501).
Separate figures for United States and Canada not published; this production is almost exclusively
Canadian matte, refined in the United States.

Nickel ore and nickel matte-Imports by countries (fiscal year).

(Pounds represent nickel contents.)

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[blocks in formation]

320, 32 34,997,650 (37,139, 42 }s:,723,278

$

459

{

[blocks in formation]

Canada...

(tons.

56, 995 (pounds.. 7,645, 034

$10,974,325

767 Chile.

stons.

1

44 (pounds..

91 Australia...

stons

2, 088 {pounds. 2,027, 850

433, 878 Other British Oceania. (pounds..

stons.

437 409,023

85, 934 French Oceania.

stons.
100

50
- pounds..

111, 207

23, 365 All other ......

tons..

pounds.. Total... stons. 59,621

546

23,057 {pounds.. 73,193, 205 }11,517,

(29, 303, 228

3,716, 293 ) 760,887 {

83,168 } 21,843

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

19101 1911. 1912. 1913.. 1914. 1915.. 1916. 1917 1919 1919, 1920.

Pounds.

Pounds. 15,672, 486 $2,070,999.00

148, 180

$54,326.00 29,535,967 3,918,556.00 291, 957 103, 717.00 46, 193, 040 5,638, 456.00 223, 161 85,059.00 47,109,930' 6,427,639.00 335, 054 134, 303,00 34, 989, 745 4,956, 448.00 108, 019 42,678.00 56,566,894 7,615, 999.00 31, 990 13,557.00 72,611, 492 9,889, 122.00 29, 917 7,869.00 75,510, 793 9,612,400.00

48

19.00 73,193,205 11,317,546.00!

40

8.00 29,303, 228 5,780, 380.00 7,256, 992 2,553, 630.00 41,586, 108 8,463,872.00 6,905,753 2, 193, 256.00

497 7,968 15,926 10,902 1,078

215

[blocks in formation]

i Figures available for second half of year only.

Nickel ore and nickel matte-Imports for consumption-Revenue.

[blocks in formation]

Free

do

Fiscal rear:

1907 19 1949. 1910. 1911 1912. 1913 1914, 1915, 1916 1917 1918 1919. 1920

16,967,033 15, $14,217 27,996, 325 29,912, 246 38,002,052 47,315, 470 43,532, 278 37,995,019 69,011, 550 74,038, 840 73,095,770 52,911, 658 46,882, 158 73, 193, 205 29, 303, 228 41,556), 108

$0.140

$2,392,042 2,541, 222 3,618,741 3,946, 293 4,565, 818 6,398, 229 6, 109,547 5,074,783 9,520, 705 9, 970, 957 9,120, 269 9,746,693 10, 461, 550 11,517,516 5,75), 380 8,463,872

...do

.do.
.do
do.
do

do.

135 .129 . 132 .120 . 135 .140 .133 .130

do. .do. do. do. .do. .do.

.135. .125 .184 223

Calendar year:

1919 1919 1920).

.do. do. .do.

157 .197 . 203

I Nickel content.

« AnteriorContinuar »