Early stage projects are located in mining-friendly jurisdictions
On average, late stage mining projects are located in regions that are less jurisdictionally attractive according to an analysis by MINING.com comparing property data from Mining Intelligence and the Fraser Institute's Investment Attractiveness Index.
Mining Intelligence tracks around 30,000 properties worldwide at various stages of development. As of May 2018, around 3,500 properties are at the advanced exploration stage, which is the pipeline for future mines.
Mining Intelligence data was paired with data from the Fraser Institute's 2017 annual study of Investment Attractiveness. For the Fraser Institute study, miners are polled on variety of topics: how friendly is the jurisdiction? what are the levels of taxation and regulation? what is the quality of the infrastructure?
When the study was run in 2017 the most attractive mining jurisdictions worldwide were the Republic of Ireland at 84% and Finland at 89%. Ranked near the bottom were Venezuela at 36% and Bolivia at 34%.
The Fraser Institute’s Average Investment Attractiveness Measure shows that activity at the earlier stages of a mine life is on average in more attractive mining jurisdictions compared to projects close to or in production.
“This is not a surprise,” says Katja Freitag, Managing Director of Mining Intelligence. “Exploring for and building a mine takes time. During this time, a lot can change that would make a country less attractive jurisdictionally. But once in the late stages of a project, or once a mine is operating, backing out is not always an option”.
The analysis does indicate that exploration efforts in the last few years that feed the future mine pipeline are being undertaken with jurisdictional attractiveness in mind.
“Demand for metals will ultimately determine where supply comes from. And unless a substitute can be found, supply will come from where the deposits are”, says Katja. “Now is the time for companies to invest in understanding and developing strategies that will help them navigate the challenges that make countries jurisdictionally less attractive so exploration can happen where the deposits are”.
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Creative Commons image of Friendly Street by Tim Green