Cliffs Natural Resources (NYSE:CLF) is beating a retreat north of the U.S. border. The company announced that it is indefinitely suspending its chromite project in the far north of Ontario by the end of Q4 of this year. Cliffs has elected not to pour additional capital into the project "given the uncertain timeline and risks associated with the development of necessary infrastructure to bring this project online," the company said in the press release announcing the news.

Chromite is a rare oxide mineral used to produce chromium. One of chromium's key uses is as the crucial alloying ingredient in stainless steel.

The mineral was discovered in the remote reaches of the province in 2008 in a 5,000-square kilometer (1,931 square mile) area subsequently named the "Ring of Fire." Cliffs bought the Black Thor deposit there for C$240 ($229 million) in 2010.