On Thursday, June 15th, several hundred community members from Baker Lake, Nunavut, were on hand to witness an historical moment as Ammar Al-Joundi, President of Agnico Eagle and Kivalliq Inuit Association (KIA) President David Ningeongan signed the Inuit Impact Benefit Agreement (IIBA) for the Whale Tail Project.

IIBA’s are required by the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement whenever a major project is built on Inuit Owned Lands. The Whale Tail IIBA addresses protection of Inuit values, culture and language, as well as protection of the land, water and wildlife. It also provides substantial financial benefits to the KIA and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated (NTI) in resource royalties and fees, as well as Inuit employment, training and business opportunities.

“It is indeed an important and historical day for the people of Baker Lake, for Inuit in the Kivalliq region and for all of Nunavut as we formally sign this new Impact Benefit Agreement,” said Ammar during the ceremony. “We are proud to partner with KIA in our continued growth in Nunavut and in developing strong, sustainable communities in the Kivalliq Region. Only through combined partnership efforts will we achieve success and including our vision of seeing mines in Nunavut being operated and managed by Inuit.”

In addition to signing the Whale Tail IIBA, KIA and Agnico Eagle recently concluded work on a formal review of the existing Meadowbank IIBA, as well as amendments to the existing Meliadine IIBA signed in 2015. This seeks to harmonize IIBA rules and procedures among the Whale Tail, Meadowbank and Meliadine projects.

The Company has approved the Amaruq Whale Tail project for development pending the receipt of the required permits, which are currently expected to be received by the second quarter of 2018. Production could begin in Q3 of 2019.



  • $6.5 million payment to KIA including $3 million towards a community initiative fund upon signing of IIBA;
  • Resource royalties and fees paid to KIA and Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. from the Whale Tail, Meadowbank and Meliadine projects. The Whale Tail project provides KIA with a 1.4% net smelter return on production;
  • $3.6 million invested in annual training programs with an additional $1 million investment in the event that 50% Inuit employment is not reached;
    Preference points for qualified NTI-registered companies on supply contracts to permit Inuit-owned businesses to compete more effectively with southern business.



  • Agnico Eagle expected to invest $1.2 billion ($US) over the next 3 years to develop the Whale Tail and Meliadine projects;
  • 2 operating gold mines by 2019;
  • 2,000 employees of which approximately 700 will be Inuit and 500 contractors;
  • $66 million per year in payroll reaching Kivalliq communities;
  • Approximately $500 million per year in contracts for goods and services after 2019.