Survey: Sweden, Western Australia among top-ranking mining jurisdictions

Sweden is one of the most attractive mining jurisdictions in the world: The country has scored the highest marks in the Fraser Institute's 'report card' on governments' policies toward the mining industry.

Other high-scoring jurisdictions in the Fraser Institute's latest mining industry survey include Western Australia and several Canadian provinces.

The Institute's Policy Perception Index (PPI) serves as an indication of the "overall policy attractiveness" of the 112 jurisdictions surveyed.

The index is based on survey responses of mining and exploration companies to policy factors that affect investment decisions; these include environmental regulations, taxation regimes, political stability, and legal systems, among many other factors.

Following Sweden the top 10 ranked jurisdictions out of the 112 are: Finland, Alberta, Ireland, Wyoming, Western Australia, New Brunswick, Nevada, Newfoundland & Labrador, and Norway.

Canada's overall PPI score decreased slightly last year.

"First Nations rights and the debate about revenue sharing have stalled many projects in Manitoba, Ontario, and elsewhere," one survey respondent wrote. "Other than raising capital in the markets, this it the greatest detriment to exploration in Canada today."

Only Newfoundland & Labrador and Western Australia were not in the top 10 last year. Yukon and Utah lost their spots.

Among the least attractive mining jurisdictions based on PPI were Indonesia, Venezuela, Argentina, and Kyrgystan.

But favourable policies aren't worth much of there mineral deposit isn't appealing. The Institute also ranked regions based on both geological attractiveness and PPI to get the Investment Attractiveness Index.

This year, Western Australia ranked first follower by Nevada, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Finland, Sweden, Alaska, Saskatchewan, and Alberta also placed high on this list.

Meanwhile Niger, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe were among the least attractive.

Respondents were also asked how much public opposition to mining was affecting permitting and approval processes. Less than half of mining companies surveyed said public opposition affected these procedures, though it most commonly delayed projects by two to four years.