Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Are Greenland's Natural Resources Insufficient to Cover the Cost of Independence?

Greenland's mineral wealth will not be enough to pay for independence and the country will remain dependent on Danish subsidies for the forseeable future, a study argued on Friday.

"Even though natural resource exploitation will become important for Greenland, it is not enough," Minik Rosing, a geology professor at the University of Copenhagen and the chairman of the University of Greenland, said in a statement.

"Because of its economy and its demographics, Greenland will need to employ a range of different measures, and that includes a block grant for the foreseeable future," he added.

Denmark's yearly block grant accounts for nearly half the Arctic territory's economy, with the remainder coming mostly from fisheries.

The huge island territory has pinned its hopes on its reserves of mineral resources including uranium, rare earths and oil.

But for Greenland to be able to rely on mining, 12 large-scale mines would have to be operational by 2040, and five of them would have to be in operation at any one time, the report said.

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