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Getting a field in the Arctic and the Far East has become easier

The effect of the declarative principle of providing subsoil plots for purposes of geological exploration on the basis of entrepreneurial risk has been extended to areas with identified forecast resources of solid minerals of categories P1 and P2 in the Far East and the Arctic. Corresponding changes were made to the order of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Ecology of the Russian Federation regulating the procedure for considering applications for obtaining the right to use subsoil for geological study of the subsoil. A set of measures to improve legislation in the field of geological exploration, including the extension of the so-called declarative principle to the subsoil with forecast resources P1 and P2, was developed by the Ministry of Eastern and Russian Development and the Ministry of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation following the profile session held at the Fourth Eastern Economic Forum in September 2018.

“The development of the Arctic, including attracting investors, is a strategic task set by the country's leadership. To do this, the Ministry of Development and Development of Russia, together with other ministries and departments, is developing proposals for changing existing laws and regulations and proposing new tools for the Arctic Territories to receive new projects, and regions for new revenues, so that, ultimately, the lives of those who live in Arctic zone ”, - said the Minister of the Russian Federation for the development of the Far East and the Arctic Alexander Kozlov.

“An important decision has been taken to develop the economy of the Arctic and the Far East. This is a very good incentive for private investment in exploration and exploration of deposits. We expect a 20–30% increase in such investments annually, ”said Alexander Krutikov, Deputy Minister of the Russian Federation for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic, explaining that the changes concern only solid minerals.

The estimated resources of the subsoil areas (that is, areas where there are no confirmed mineral reserves) are divided into three groups according to their degree of justification: P1, P2 and P3. Predicted resources of category P3 take into account only the potential possibility of discovery of deposits of a particular type of mineral. The declarative order of their submission was introduced earlier. P2 and P1 are such subsoil areas where the probability of finding and confirming reserves is higher.

“The possibilities of expanding the declarative principle to subsoil areas containing mineral resources of high categories P1 and P2 have been found. The relevant changes to the regulations are already in place. This will multiply increase the investment of investors and increase the economic indicators of the development of the territory of strategic regions. We plan, according to the SME development strategy of the country until 2035, to attract at least 10 rubles of investments for every ruble of budget funds. The regions will receive a new development impulse from this, ”commented Dmitry Kobylkin, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation.

Previously, subsoil plots with forecast resources P1 and P2 were provided solely based on the results of auctions. After changing the order of consideration of applications, any subsoil areas where there are no confirmed reserves, but there are forecasted resources P1 and P2, can be provided without auctions. They get the one who first applied for them. In this case, one person may receive no more than three plots of subsoil during a calendar year.

The mineral resource base of solid minerals in the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation is significant. According to Rosgeolfond, the state balance of reserves takes into account more than 980 solid mineral deposits and more than 280 objects with approved forecast resources. The Arctic's subsoil comprises 97.3% of platinoid reserves, 43% of tin reserves, a significant amount of nickel, titanium, apatite ores and rare-earth metal ores. Explored reserves provide nearly 98% of platinum production, 100% titanium, zirconium, rare earth metals, apatite ores, more than 97% nickel.



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