The Land and Environmental Court announced on April 2nd, 2015 that LKAB can resume mining at the Leveäniemi mine in Svappavaara outside of Kiruna.
"Finally! We have been planning and looking forward to this for quite some time," said Per-Erik Lindvall, Senior Vice President, Technology and Business Development, LKAB.
The permit entitles LKAB to mine up to 15 million tonnes of iron ore per year in the open-pit mine. The Leveäniemi mine was first operated from 1964 to 1983.
"We are pleased and relieved to receive this notification. Now, all permits are in place for our three new mines. The capacity to grow will strengthen our competitiveness and better enable us to respond to changes in demand. This makes LKAB a bigger, stronger company," commented Per-Erik Lindvall.
The Land and Environmental Court has also issued a so-called enforcement order, which means that LKAB can begin mining directly while waiting for the ruling to gain legal force.
"The first application for the Svappavaara field was submitted in 2008. Now, seven years later, we have permits for operating all three mines," said Per-Erik Lindvall.
LKAB plans to mine the deposit in Leveäniemi at a rate of about twelve million tonnes per year. Currently, known mineral reserves amount to 115 million tonnes with an average iron content of 46.8 percent. The deposit is open at depth, meaning that its extent at depth is not known.
A production start is planned for the second quarter of 2016 and, when it reaches full production, the operation will employ about 200 people, employees of LKAB Berg & Betong and other contractors. The final products will be both pellets and sinter fines.
Per-Erik Lindvall, Senior Vice President Technology and Business Development, tel +46 70 373 8163