"Norway is an attractive country for mineral extraction"

Jørgen Stenvold på Explore NGU 2024.
Stenvold thinks Norway is an attractive country for mineral extraction. Photo: Karl Jørgen Marthinsen, NGU.

“Norway is an attractive country in the context of the EU because we have the geological conditions to find critical minerals and metals, is a reliable country, and can extract resources in a sustainable manner," says Jørgen Stenvold, Project Director for Norge Mineraler AS.

“More mapping is needed in Norway”

Stenvold participated in Explore NGU 2024, where the exploration industry gathered to exchange experiences and discuss how NGU can best assist the industry. NRK (link in Norwegian only) has reported that there are values worth several hundred billion kroner in Eigersund municipality. Here, Norge Mineraler AS is actively working to investigate what can be found and extracted, partly based on NGU's maps and data.

"Since 2019, we have invested more than one billion kroner in drilling and core sampling within an 80 kilometers radius in the Eigersund Municipality. Norway is far behind Sweden and Finland in terms of geological mapping, and more mapping and exploration is needed. The last few years with pandemic and war have changed our perspectives on access to resources, and we are now aware that we need to secure our industry with better resource autonomy and self-sufficiency. To develop a project from exploration to mineral production takes a very long time. Norge Mineraler AS plans to have an active mine in Eigersund this decade," explains Stenvold.

“Norway is an efficient country to operate in”

Johannes Holzäpfe på Explore NGU 2024.
Holzäpfel is glad for more mineral exploration in Norway. Photo: Karl Jørgen Marthinsen, NGU.

Johannes Holzäpfel, who is the Exploration Manager for EMX Royalty Corporation, also thinks Norway is a good country to search for minerals in. EMX is the largest mineral interest holder in Norway, with prospects in places like Røros, Bamble, and Kåfjord.

"Although it can be expensive to go on holiday here, Norway has excellent infrastructure with roads and powerlines going everywhere. Further the low energy costs and highly skilled workforce will make mines very efficient. Since geology crosses national borders, prospective geology in Sweden and Finland can also extend into Norway, so the potential can be great in areas that have not been mapped yet”.

Holzäpfel is pleased that there has been more focus on mineral exploration in Norway but wishes for improvement in one area.

"Mineral exploration takes a long time and costs a lot. Norway should investigate their VAT regulation and allow startups to recover the VAT like any other established company. This is not only a problem for exploration but any startup with no cash flow." he points out.

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