February 7, 2013



Frank Ongaro

Mining Minnesota

Craig Pagel

Iron Mining Association

Mining is Major Contributor to Minnesota, Regional Economies

Potential exists to more than double economic impact

Duluth, Minn., Feb. 6, 2013 – A recent report outlining Minnesota’s mining industry found that in 2010, the combined economic impact of iron ore mining and non-ferrous minerals development was more than $3.2 billion statewide. That impact has the potential to more than double with the expansion of mining, supporting more than 27,000 jobs in Minnesota and producing $7.7 billion for the state’s economy if all projects currently under consideration move forward. The recent report was developed by the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) Labovitz School of Business and Economics as they studied the mining industry’s strong economic impact on the state as well as the significant opportunities for growth.

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, emphasized that 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.

According to the report, 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 in addition to many others. These jobs are created regionally and statewide, according to the report.

“The iron mining industry continues to evolve, both technically and environmentally. The ongoing evolution and improvement contribute to the industry’s current and future economic impact,” Pagel said.

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.

To read the full report, go to: https://lsbe.d.umn.edu/bber/bber_projects.php

About Iron Mining Association of Minnesota

The Mission of the Iron Mining Association of Minnesota (IMA) is to promote an iron ore industry that will provide long-term growth and prosperity for all stakeholders through profitability in a competitive, global market. The IMA is a trade association made up of the iron ore mines located in Northeast Minnesota as well as hundreds of vendors that supply their products and services to the mining industry. The companies that operate in Minnesota include ArcelorMittal, Cliffs Natural Resources, Essar Steel of Minnesota, Magnetation, Mesabi Nuggets, Mining Resources and U.S. Steel. New mines, technology advancements and upgrades to existing production lines will increase the economic impact to Minnesota as well bring new value added iron products used in products we use every day.

About MiningMinnesota

The MiningMinnesota initiative seeks to give Minnesotans the facts about critical and strategic metals mining efforts currently being proposed in our state. MiningMinnesota’s pledge is to ensure responsible mining practices that meet or exceed these standards, as well as offer new economic opportunities for our neighbors in northeastern Minnesota. Northeastern Minnesota has long been the region’s mining epicenter. Throughout the years, iron mining has provided the residents of northeastern Minnesota with long-term jobs, good wages, and stable communities in which to raise their families. Critical and strategic metals mining offers a new opportunity for Minnesota. A revitalized mining industry in the state will bring hundreds of new jobs and add a significant economic and social boost.


The Economic Impact of Ferrous and Non-Ferrous Mining

PDF: https://lsbe.d.umn.edu/uploads/FINAL%20Mining%202012%20Report.pdf

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