Highland Copper Company Inc. has disclosed that following a comprehensive one-year evaluation of the permitted Copperwood Project, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) has recommended a $50 million grant through the Strategic Site Readiness Program (SSRP).
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The Project was given the chance to be presented to the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) Board for grant consideration by the MEDC and Highland. The Michigan Senate and House Appropriations Committees provide final approval after the MSF, which is the first level of approval. As they move forward with the approval process, Highland looks forward to answering any additional inquiries about Copperwood in light of their positive discussions with the MSF Board.
Highland Copper is thrilled to be in consideration for a $50 million grant from the State of Michigan for our Copperwood Project. We had the opportunity to discuss the project yesterday with the Michigan Strategic Fund Board, from whom approval is required. The MSF Board had a range of questions that we look forward to addressing over the coming period in anticipation of a successful outcome. We believe the economic impact of the project will be transformational for the Upper Peninsula and we are thankful for the unwavering support from the local communities.
Barry O’Shea, Interim CEO, Highland Copper Company Inc.
The Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund (SOAR) provides financial support for the SSRP program, which aims to develop investment-ready sites to draw and encourage investment in the state. The Copperwood Project has the potential to be a major source of domestic copper in the United States to support the ongoing clean energy transition, and it is strongly aligned with Michigan's focus on electrification and mobility.
After working with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy for more than ten years, the Copperwood Project team has been in the Western Upper Peninsula. This has allowed them to announce the project's full permitted status in early 2023. Additionally, the Project has gained a lot of local support thanks to constant, open communication with stakeholders in the community.
Resolutions and letters of support were submitted by more than 20 local towns, cities, villages, and counties, in addition to many local businesses and organizations, to support the Project's application for the State grant.
To show support for the Project on behalf of their respective government units, several elected officials joined Highland Copper at the MSF Board meeting on Tuesday.
When the Copperwood Project is operational, it will have a revolutionary effect on the local economy by creating about 380 well-paying jobs and generating significant direct, indirect, and induced economic benefits from increased spending in a region that has endured decades of industry closures. Since the 19th century, mining has played a significant economic role in the Upper Peninsula and continues to do so today.