Brian Abraham is the Canadian chair of the Dentons mining practice group. His practice involves all phases of mining from exploration, development and production through to reclamation. He provides advice on all forms of title reviews, options, leases, purchase and joint-venture agreements during the early phases of mineral exploration and permitting. He also advises on socioeconomic, engineering, consulting, construction, operator, equity and debt financing, smelter, processing agreements, and reclamation agreements.
Within his practice area, Brian acts domestically and internationally for junior, mid-sized and major explorers, developers and producers as well as engineering, mining and geological consultants, individuals, prospectors, organizations, syndicates and financiers (debt and equity) in private and public financing. He has also participated in background studies for mineral legislation in British Columbia and other Canadian jurisdictions and has advised foreign governments regarding the preparation and implementation of mining legislation. Brian advises clients and prepares opinions on complex legal mineral titles issues in B.C. as well as litigation involving title matters, right-to-mine, valuation, expropriation matters and aboriginal issues.
He has acted for clients involved in transactions in North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia. Brian has also acted for clients in energy-related projects in Canada, the United States, Asia, Europe and Latin America with particular emphasis on coalbed methane projects. As part of the Dentons Mining Group, he also addresses taxation, regulatory, employment, transportation, construction, securities and corporate matters in relation to mining.
- Counsel to North American Tungsten Corporation Ltd. (NTC) on its US$12.0 million working capital loan with Queenwood Capital Partners II LLC, which is secured by a charge over the assets of NTC. NTC is a Tier 1 junior resource company that operates one of the world’s largest tungsten mines, Cantung, located in the NWT and has one of the world’s largest undeveloped tungsten deposits called Mactung, located in Yukon.
- Counsel to North American Tungsten Corporation Ltd. (NTC), a Canadian Tier 1 junior resource company, on its US$11.0 million demand loan with Callidus Capital Corporation, which is secured by a charge over all the assets of NTC. NTC operates one of the world’s largest tungsten mines, Cantung, located in the NWT and has one of the world’s largest undeveloped tungsten deposits called Mactung, located in Yukon.
- Counsel to North American Tungsten Corporation Ltd., a public mining corporation with respect to various mining matters including its project financing requirements and mining reclamation security obligations and technical disclosure matters.
- Advising MMG on its role leading a consortium to acquire the Las Bambas copper project in Peru from GlencoreXstrata for US$5.85 billion.
- Counsel to the Agent and the lending syndicate in respect of Imperial Metals Corporation's CA$200 million senior secured revolving credit facility consisting of two tranches: a CA$50 million revolving working capital tranche and a CA$150 million revolving construction tranche. The senior credit facility was completed concurrently with an offering of US$325 million 7% senior notes due 2019, and a junior unsecured revolving term credit facility of up to CA$75 million. Imperial Metals Corporation, an exploration, mine development and operating company based in Vancouver, used partial proceeds of the borrowings at closing to refinance existing indebtedness, and intends to use the balance of the proceeds and borrowings to partially finance the development, construction and commissioning of the Red Chris copper and gold mine in northwestern British Columbia, for ongoing working capital requirements and for general corporate purposes.
- Counsel to Golden Predator Corp. on its USD$35 million loan facility with RK Mine Finance and Brewery Creek acquisition from Alexco Resource Corp.
- Counsel to Eastcoal Inc. in connection with its $17 million financing by way of private placement
- Counsel to Adamus Resources Limited with respect to its $313 million combination by way of a scheme of arrangement with Endeavour Mining Corporation
- Counsel to the Special Committee of Augen Gold Corp. with respect to the unsolicited take-over bid and subsequent approximately $63 million supported offer by Trelawney Mining and Exploration Inc.
- Counsel to American Bullion Minerals Ltd. with respect to Imperial Metals Corporation's $22 million bid to acquire American Bullion Minerals Ltd.
- Represented Norsemont Mining Inc. in connection with the $520 million acquisition by HudBay Minerals Inc. of all of the outstanding common shares of Norsemont by way of formal take-over bid
- Counsel to Copper Canyon Resources Ltd. in connection with its acquisition by NovaGold Resources Inc. by way of plan of arrangement
- Canadian Counsel to Andean Resources on its completion of a $234.5 million public offering of common shares
- Counsel to Duluth Metals Limited (TSX:DM) on the US$227 million joint venture development of its Nokomis copper-nickel-PGM mining project with Antofagasta PLC, 2010
- Counsel to Andean Resources Limited on a $90 million public offering of common shares
- Represented Procon Mining & Tunnelling in the restructuring of and investment in Cross Lake Minerals Ltd., completed by way of a Plan of Arrangement
- Counsel to IAMGOLD Corporation on its $275 million acquisition of Orezone Resources Inc. (2009)
- Represented Centenario Copper Corp. in connection with its US$80 million IPO
- Counsel to Meridian Gold Inc. in connection with $3.5 billion take-over bid by Yamana Gold Inc., including "poison pill" hearing before the Ontario Securities Commission. Meridian Gold Inc., Re (2007), 30 O.S.C.B. 9307 (O.S.C.)
- Recognized by Legal 500 Canada 2015 as a Leading Lawyer in the area of Energy - Mining.
Recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada 2015 as one of Canada’s leading lawyers in the areas of Mining Law (2013-2015) and Natural Resources Law (2006-2015).
- Most frequently recommended by The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2012, 2013 and 2014 as one of Canada's leading lawyers in the area of Mining.
- Recognized by Chambers Global: The Guide to the World’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2012, 2013 and 2014 as a leading lawyer in the area of Energy & Natural Resources: Mining.
Recognized by The International Who’s Who of Mining Lawyers 2014 as a leading lawyer in the area of Mining.
- Selected as Best Lawyers 2014 Vancouver Mining "Lawyer of the Year".
- Recognized by Chambers Latin America: Latin America's Leading Lawyers for Business 2013 as a leading lawyer in the area of Projects: Mining: Leading Canadian Firms.
- Recognized by The Legal 500 Canada 2013 in the area of Mining.
- Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished BV Peer Review Rating, 2012 and 2013.
Recognized by the 2012 and 2013 Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada as a leading lawyer in the area of Mining.
Recognized by Who’s Who Legal: Canada as a leading lawyer in the area of Mining, 2010 – 2013.
Recognized by the 2012 International Who's Who of Business Lawyers in the area of Mining.
- Recognized by The 2010 Lexpert Guide To The Leading U.S./Canada Cross-Border Corporate Lawyers in Canada in the area of Mining.
Ranked among LawDay's 31 leading lawyers in Canada in the practice area of Mining Law for the year 2009.
Honors and Awards
- Fellow of Geoscientists of Canada, 2013
- Received the well-regarded distinction and recognition as Queen's Counsel, February 2009
- Professional Service Award, Association of Professional Engineers & Geoscientists of British Columbia, 2004
- B.C. Mining Supporter for the Year from Mining Association of British Columbia, 2000
- Past Presidents Distinguished Service Award for long and distinguished service to the minerals industry and devoted service to the institutions of the B.C. and Yukon Chamber of Mines, 1999
- Fellow of Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy for outstanding contribution to mining in Canada, 1994
In the Media
- Quoted in,"Royalty Deals 'Best Game in Town", Article by Anthony Davis, Lexpert, July 2012
- Quoted in, "What's hot, hot, hot", Canadianlawyermagazine.com, June 2012
- "Pipeline project approval is open and public", The Vancouver Sun, May 2012
- “Access Rights to Mineral Tenures in British Columbia”
- “Knock, Knock? Making Sense of the New Private-Land Requirements Notice”
- “Legal Brief – Challenges and Opportunities in Mexico and Central America”
- “Challenges and Opportunities in China - 7 Steps to Consider When Investing in China”
- “Current Issues Affecting Mining Issuers”
- “New British Columbia Coalbed Gas Act"
- “Proposed National Instrument 52-109 Certification of Disclosure in Issuer’s Annual and Interim Filings”
- “Update on Legal and Regulatory Aspects of Coalbed Methane Development in British Columbia”
- Author, “Due Diligence Deskbook; CLE”, Mining Titles, 1994 - 2013
- ''Mineral Claims and the Duty to Consult in Yukon'', January 2013
- “Mining Report British Columbia Securities Commission”, 2012
- "Proposal to Make QPs Submit to Jurisdiction", Focus on Mining, September 2011
- “International Mining Congress in Mexico”, October 2011
- “Comparison of Joint Venture Models”, Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, July 2010
- “Canadian Mining Law and Financing Canadian Executive Forums”, 2009
- "Recent Developments of Importance", The 2008 LEXPERT/ALM Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, 2008
- “Reporting for Natural Resource Issues”, Canadian Institute, 2008
- Insight, Pacific Canada Gas Forum, 2008
- Canadian Mining Law and Financing Canadian Executive Forums, 2008
- "Reduced CFO and CEO Certification for Venture Issuers", Focus on Securities, December 2007
- Vancouver Island Exploration Group, Mining Seminar, 2007
- Insight, Western Canadian Securities Forum, 2006
- Mining Law, CLE, 2005
- Insight, Mining Forum, 2005
- Western Canadian Securities Forum, 2005
- “2004 BCCA 497 - The British Columbia Court of Appeal has Confirmed Principles of Valuation that Apply to Claims for Compensation by Surface Owners for Loss or Damage Caused by Exploitation of Mineral Rights” Bepple v. Western Industrial Clay Products Ltd., 2004
- Western Canadian Securities Forum, 2004
- B.C. Natural Gas Symposium, 2004
- Northwest Mining Association Annual Meeting – First Nations Consultation, 2003
- “Understanding the Business of Coalbed Methane”, Conference Board of Canada, Calgary, 2003
- Insight, Western Canadian Securities Forum, Calgary, 2003
- Insight, Coalbed Methane Conference, 2003
- British Columbia Natural Gas Symposium, Canadian Institute, 2003
- “New Disclosure Rules for Mining Companies”, Conference Board of Canada, British Columbia, 2002
- “New Disclosure Rules for Mining Companies”, Conference Board of Canada, Toronto, 2002
Activities and Affiliations
- Partner of Dentons LLP since 2002, and prior to that, a partner in another national law firm since 1985
- Director of Mining Association of British Columbia
- Director of Aboriginal Mine Training Association
- Chaired and participated as a speaker in many conferences nationwide and internationally on the subject of mining and energy law
- Member of Mineral Tenure Advisory Committee to Ministry of Energy and Mines for British Columbia
- Presently a member of a number of committees established to advise the mining industry regarding government and related issues
- Member of Industry/Government Committee on Regulations under the Mining Rights Amendment Act of 1998
- Chair of B.C.’s mining industry response to OSC/TSE Mining Standards Task Force Report (1998) and National Instrument 43-101 Proposal
- Past Provincial Chair (B.C. branch) of Canadian Bar Association Natural Resources and Energy Subsection
- Past National Chair of Canadian Bar Association Committee on Natural Resources and Energy Section
- Member of Securities Committee and Lands Regulation, Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada
- Member of Canadian Securities Administrators Mining Technical Advisory and Monitoring Committee (NI 43-101 Committee)
- Member of Committee Respecting Species at Risk Federal Legislation for the Mining Association of Canada
- Past member of Provincial Council of Canadian Bar Association (B.C.)
- Past member of National Council of Canadian Bar Association (National)
- Past Adjunct Professor of Mining Law at the University of British Columbia
- Thesis Advisor to the first student to receive a Ph.D in Mineral Economics in the Mineral Processing Department of the Engineering Faculty (UBC)
Community Involvement and Pro Bono
- Sancta Maria House
- Agape Street Ministry
- Presenter, “What Not to Say: Avoiding Liability in 43-101 Reporting”, Dentons Mining Seminar, November 26, 2013
- Presenter, “43-101 and Disclosure Issues”, Continuing Legal Education of BC, Vancouver, April 12, 2013
- Presenter, “Due Diligence In Foreign Transactions - Maybe You Can’t See the Forest Because There Are No Trees”, Canadian Institute of Natural Resources, Vancouver, May 2012
- Presenter, "The Merger and Acquisition Process", Royal Bank, November 2011
- Presenter, "Joint Venture Overview", 29th International Mining Convention, Acapulco, Mexico, October 2011
- Presenter, "Due Diligence – Looking for Gold in the Paper", Continuing Legal Education of BC, Vancouver, October 6, 2011
- Presenter, "Pitfalls in 4 -101 Report Composition" and "Due Diligence - Creating the Framework", FMC Mining Seminar, Vancouver, September 28, 2011
- Presenter, “Due Diligence – Roping the Wind for Dust Particles”, Vancouver, September 28, 2011
- Presenter, Presentation on China, Association of Canadian General Counsel, September 2011
- Presenter, "Legal Due Diligence: Integrating the Legal and Business Parts of the Process", Federated Press, Vancouver, March 2011
- Presenter, "Who’s on Top?", Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, Banff, July 2010
- Presenter, “Due Diligence – What You Don’t Find Out Will Hurt You", Federated Press, Vancouver, April 2010
- Presenter, "Creating a Due Diligence Framework", Federated Press, Vancouver, March 2010
- Presenter, "The History of Mining in Canada", International Mining Congress, Veracruz, Mexico, October 29, 2009
- Presenter, “FMC Mining Seminar Series”, Vancouver, May 19, 2009
- Presenter, "Tips and Traps in NI 43 - 101 in a Mergers and Acquisitions Environment", FMC Annual Mining Seminar Series, Vancouver, January 15, 2009
- Presenter, Canadian Mining Law and Financing Canadian Executive Forums, 2009
- Presenter, "Update on Legal and Regulatory Aspects of Coalbed Methane Development in British Columbia", Insight, 2008 Pacific Canada Gas Forum, September 24‐25, 2008
- Presenter, “Practical Solutions for Effective CEO/CFO Certification" and "Reporting for Natural Resource Issues", Canadian Institute ‐ Reporting for Natural Resources Forum, May 26 - 27, 2008
- Presenter, "Raising Capital: Equity", Canadian Mining Law & Financial 2008 Conference, April 14‐15, 2008
- "Mining and Natural Resources in Canada and China", Canada‐China Forum, October 1‐2, 2007
- Presenter, Vancouver Island Exploration Group, Mining Seminar, 2007
- "Current Issues as They Affect Mining and Oil and Gas Issuers", Insight, Western Canadian Securities Forum, April 10, 2006
- Presenter, Mining Law, CLE, 2005
- Presenter, Mining Forum, 2005
- Presenter, Western Canadian Securities Forum, 2003 - 2005
- Presenter, "Management Committee Considerations in Joint‐Venture Agreements", Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Annual Meeting, 2004
- Presenter, B.C. Natural Gas Symposium, 2003 - 2004
- Chair, British Columbia and Yukon Chamber of Mines, Short Course Program on National Instrument 43-101, 2003
- Chair, Conference Board of Canada, Structuring More Effective Mining Ventures, 2003
- Presenter, Northwest Mining Association Annual Meeting – First Nations Consultation, 2003
- Chair, British Columbia and Association for Mineral Exploration of B.C., Short Course Program on National Instrument 43-101, 2003
- Chair, "Structuring More Effective Mining Ventures", Conference Board of Canada, 2003
- Presenter, "Understanding the Business of Coalbed Methane", Conference Board of Canada, Calgary, 2003
- Presenter, Insight, Coalbed Methane Conference, 2003
- Presenter, "New Disclosure Rules for Mining Companies", Conference Board of Canada, Toronto and Vancouver, 2002
- Presenter, "Mining Law Joint‐Venture Agreements", CLE, 1999
- Presenter, "Joint‐Venture Agreements for Canadian Mining Companies", CLE, May 1998
- Chair, "Working with International Mining Agreements", Insight, May 1996
- Presenter, "Mining: Developing and Structuring Deals", CLE, January 1996
- Presenter, "Land Use and Protected Areas for Resource Use in B.C.", Insight, April 1995
- Chair, "Mining Opportunities in Latin America", Insight, February 1994
- Presenter, "Complying with Public Disclosure Requirements", Insight, November 1994
- Presenter, British Columbia and Yukon Chamber of Mines, Exploration and Mining for Brokers, 1991
- Presenter, Prospectors and Developers Associations, Canadian Mining Law Developments, 1992
- Presenter, Canadian Bar Association and Yukon Chamber of Mines Resource Law, 1992
- Presenter, Asia Pacific Institute, Structuring Joint Ventures with First Nations, June 1992
- Presenter, CLE Mining Law, January 1989
- Chair, CLE Mining Law, 1980, 1983, 1986, 1989
- Presenter, Yukon Mining Law, 1980
- Moderator, "B.C.'s Mining Industry & What You Need to Know", FMC's Mining Seminar Series, Ongoing