New study: Mining cluster drive huge investments

  • 2021-11-18
  • 12:00
  • News

The Swedish mining cluster is a very strong driving force for investments. Together they make up 20% of Sweden’s industrial investments, regionally the mining cluster will account for as much as 75% in the coming years. In addition: Nine of Sweden’s largest companies are either suppliers to or industrial partners to the mining industry. For the first time, there is now a calculated value for the entire Swedish mining cluster, the figures will be presented today Thursday in connection with Svemin’s Autumn Summit.
– One should not underestimate the importance of securing this type of societal industries in the long term, says Maria Sunér, CEO of Svemin.

The Swedish mining cluster is a world leader in many areas, together they account for 3% of Sweden’s GDP. A large part of the goods are exported over the entire value and make up about 8% of the total Swedish exports. The entire sector is also capital-intensive and accounts for 13-20% of all industrial investments in Sweden.

-It is obvious that the mining sector has a greater significance for our economy than you might first think, the mines are far from metropolitan areas and fly under the radar for many. But many of the long value chains in Swedish industry are based on basic industries such as mines, says Maria Sunér.

In the study, representatives of the Swedish mining cluster were interviewed, and annual reports and other open sources were also used as a basis.

– Even though we already knew that the Swedish mining cluster is something unique and involves several highly specialized and world-leading companies, we were still surprised by the amount of serious and promising industrial partnerships and development projects related to the mining industry. It can be said that the cluster extends across different sectors of the economy to an increasing degree, says Signe Rølmer Vejgaard, economist at Copenhagen Economics and responsible for the report The Swedish mining cluster’s economic value.

Copenhagen Economics has also looked at the value of the mining cluster at the regional level, in Västerbotten and Norrbotten. There, the activities within metals and minerals have an enormous impact on society; the mining cluster for 20% of regional GDP and 5% of jobs. In the coming years, moreover, an estimated – slightly incredible – 75% of all regional investments will be linked to the mining cluster.

-This figure is also based on what we know today. If new mines are added, this will of course increase even more, says Signe Rølmer Vejgaard.

Behind the investments in northern Sweden is primarily LKAB’s new strategy to switch to the production of iron sponge, but also the flagship investment Hybrit as well as the newly started steel company H2 Green Steel. From a political point of view, it has been described as a new industrial revolution, which is now taking place in the north. But there are serious obstacles along the way. One of them is the regulations for various environmental and permit assessments, which repeatedly put a stop to new large investments. The latest example, where state LKAB was rejected in its application to expand operations in Kiruna, is just one in a row. Kaunis Iron, Cementa, Beowulf Mining and Boliden have all been affected by today’s inefficient permit system.

-It is clear that the potential in Sweden is enormous. But the value of the Swedish mining cluster depends entirely on whether we get functioning permit processes, says Maria Sunér. That is why I would like to point the whole hand at the Reform package for efficient permit processes that we recently launched.

>>> Download the report in Swedish or English 

FACTS – The study The economic value of the Swedish mining cluster

The definition of the Swedish mining cluster in the report comprises three levels;

The mining sector itself, mining equipment and support industry (upstream subcontractors that produce inputs to the mining sector), as well as steel and metal production (downstream producers, based on inputs from the mining sector)

The Swedish mining cluster (mining sector alone in brackets) stands for…

3% (1%) of GDP
8% (1.3%) of exports
100,000 – 125,000 (20,000) direct and indirect jobs
13-20% of industrial investments
1.2% (0.7%) of total tax payments

In Västerbotten and Norrbotten, the mining cluster stands for…

20% of regional GDP
5% of jobs regionally
75% of regional investments in the coming years – based on what we know today. If new mines are added, this will increase even more.

The report was prepared by Copenhagen Economics on behalf of Svemin. Responsible economist at Copenhagen Economics is Signe Rølmer.

For interviews contact:

Signe Rølmer Vejgaard
Managing Economist, Copenhagen Economics
Mobile +45 53 73 23 10

Maria Sunér
CEO, Svemin
Mobile: + 46 (0) 733 017 315