Sweden eyes cobalt mining on home turf (The Local – February 15, 2018)


Sweden is “one of the most interesting areas in the world” to explore minerals like cobalt and lithium, Enterprise and Innovation Minister Mikael Damberg says.

A new report suggests that Sweden’s historic mining area of Bergslagen may have great potential for extracting sought-after minerals such as cobalt and lithium and the government on Thursday gave the go-ahead to investigate the opportunities to start exploring the matter.

The demand for cobalt, lithium and Rare Earth Metals (REE) has soared in recent years due to their contribution to green innovations such as electric cars and solar and wind power stations as well as the production of mobile phone batteries. Congo is today the world’s leading provider of cobalt, with 65 percent of the total production, while China mines 95 percent of the world’s REEs.

“Demand will grow explosively for a number of these minerals and metals going forward,” Enterprise and Innovation Minister Mikael Damberg told The Local in an interview.

“So Europe needs to have a think about whether it’s really that healthy to be that import-dependent on, for example, Congo where a lot of the exploration is done in some pretty dire conditions.”

For the rest of this article: https://www.thelocal.se/20180215/sweden-eyes-cobalt-mining-on-home-turf