The Barsele Project is situated in the mining region of Västerbottens Län, Northern Sweden, 600 km north of Stockholm and covers 33,500 hectares in the Fennoscandian Shield. The Barsele Project is located on the western end of the Proterozoic “Skellefte Trend”, a prolific volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits belt, that intersects with the “Gold Line” in Northern Sweden. Both polymetallic “VMS” deposits and intrusive hosted “Orogenic gold” deposits are present in this region and on this property. Current and past producers in the region include Boliden, Kristineberg, Bjorkdal, Svartliden and Storliden.

The main gold-bearing system remains open in all directions. The structurally linked gold mineralized “lodes” occur mainly within a granodiorite host and to a lesser extent, volcanic and sedimentary rocks. Multiples of parallel to sub-parallel “lodes” that vary in width from 10 metres to 100 metres, combine for a maximum known thickness (including low grade-waste islands) of 425 metres. The Avan–Central–Skiråsen zones have a strike length approaching 3.6 kilometres and that same northwest trending structural corridor does contain localized bodies with gold mineralization over an additional 4.4 kilometres. The drill tested depth of the mineralized system approaches 1.0 kilometre and remains open. Gold is generally associated with arsenopyrite and low base metal content, but also occurs as native metal.

Since Agnico Eagle became operator of the project in late 2015, a total of 162,691 metres of overburden penetration and core collection has been tabulated from a total of 433 drill holes. A significant portion of the 2020 drilling was focused on defining, verifying and expanding the mineral resources within the Avan-Central-Skiråsen (CAS) “Orogenic Gold” system. The remaining drill meterage was primarily focused on the discovery of massive sulphide mineralization that is hosted in rocks of volcanic and sedimentary composition along with post mineral intrusive dykes and sills. The historic Norra VMS deposit within the claims is an example of this style of mineralization.

Why Sweden?

Mining in Sweden

Mining is a traditional industry in Sweden. Its history extends back over a thousand years. Its metal ore and other mineral resources, and knowledge about how to use them, have been major factors in building the prosperity the country enjoys today. The historic Falun Copper Mine was for hundreds of years the most important industrial site in the country producing, at times, up to two-thirds of Europe’s copper requirements.

The following centuries saw deposits of base metals, gold, silver and iron ore discovered and exploited. Notable early discoveries include the giant iron ore mines of Kiirunavaara and Luossavaara discovered during the 1730’s and operated today by Luossavaara – Kiirunavaara AB. In 1924 prospecting in the Skellefte district led to the discovery of the Boliden deposit and the foundation of Boliden Limited now listed in Toronto. Historical restrictions on foreign participation in Sweden’s mining industry have led to its domination by a small number of large domestic mining companies. Until recently the State took a major role in the mining industry through State run exploration and the right to acquire a major stake in any new mining venture. In 1991 however, following a change in Government and an application to join the European Union, Sweden adopted new policies to encourage foreign investment including cuts in the level of taxation, better business conditions and the privatization of state industrial interests. These new policies extended to the mining industry with the lifting of foreign investment restrictions and the abolition of State participation in mining projects. A new mining law was introduced to give effect to these new policies.
The attraction of post 1991 Sweden has been recognized by a number of major exploration companies that have developed a significant exploration presence in recent years.

Sweden at a Glance

  • Area:

    449,964 km2

  • Population:

    10.23 million (2019)

  • Mineral Resources:

    Iron ore, zinc, lead, copper, gold, silver, uranium

  • Mining Facts:

    Despite its relatively small size, Sweden's share of world iron ore output is about 2%, and is the only iron ore exporter in Europe.