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Business North - The Daily Briefing - Business Newspaper Online
Labovitz School report reiterates mining's hugh economic impact
A report outlining Minnesota’s mining industry determined the combined economic impact of iron ore mining and non-ferrous minerals development was more than $3.2 billion statewide.
The report, based on findings during 2010, was developed by the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) Labovitz School of Business and Economics.
It concluded mining has the potential to more than double, supporting more than 27,000 jobs and producing $7.7 billion for the state’s economy if all projects currently under consideration move forward.
According to the report, proposed expansions to existing iron mines and new mining projects under consideration, both iron and non-ferrous, would support an additional 15,500 Minnesota workers and contribute an additional $4.5 billion to the state’s economy if all move forward. These numbers reflect annual operations only and do not include the jobs or economic impact of construction of new facilities.
If expansions of existing mining operations and development of projects currently under consideration take place, there will be a significant boost to the economy from construction as well. Construction of proposed expansions and new projects, modeled over a period from 2012 through 2016, have the potential to contribute an additional economic impact of nearly $5.3 billion to the state’s economy and to create an average of 2,423 jobs a year for five years. The report predicted that employment could range from 1,964 in 2012 to a peak of 3,190 in 2016.
Iron mining production in 2010 generated nearly $152 million in taxes and royalties to state and local units of government payable in 2011; of that, more than $64 million supported local school districts and the University of Minnesota.
Mining continues to be one of the largest contributors to northeastern Minnesota’s economy, accounting for 30 percent of the Gross Regional Product (GRP) in 2010. In comparison, the tourism industry accounted for 11 percent of the GRP and 10 percent of the GRP was from forestry.
“Based on overall employment and broad economic impact, it’s clear that mining is extremely important to the economy of the entire state of Minnesota,” said Craig Pagel, president of the Iron Mining Association of Minnesota. “Regionally, mining remains the single largest contributor to the health of our economy – today and into the future.”
Frank Ongaro, president of Mining Minnesota, said the potential for future mining-related jobs and economic contributions is greater than any other industry.
“The opportunity to create high-quality jobs in the future – more than 15,000 jobs that can support families and communities – is second to none,” he said.
Every job in the mining sector leads to the creation of an additional 1.8 jobs in other industries, including transportation, restaurants and bars, wholesale trade, electric power generation, real estate, medicine and dentistry, technology, educational institutions and others. The jobs are created regionally and statewide, according to the report.
“The iron mining industry continues to evolve, both technically and environmentally,” said Pagel. “The ongoing evolution and improvement contribute to the industry’s current and future economic impact.”
Ongaro also noted that development of non-ferrous minerals, like copper, nickel, gold, platinum and palladium, helped support 550 jobs in 2010, contributing more than $210 million to the state’s economy even though no non-ferrous mining was underway.Previous Daily Briefing Articles:
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