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THE economy of Denmark experienced another solid year in 1990. Inflation rates remained below 2%, and for the first time in 23 years there was a surplus in the net pay balance after two years with a net surplus in the trade balance.

From 1988 to the end of 1989 unemployment grew from 8.7 to 9.4%, while the GDP also grew 2.3%. Consumption fell by 0.4% and investments grew 5.0%. A similar trend is seen in 1990, but figures for the fourth quarter are not available.

In 1990 the government forwarded a proposal for revision of the Raw Materials Act making concession policy possible with respect to offshore mining of raw materials such as gravel, sand, heavy minerals, glauconite, phosphorite and other raw materials; hydrocarbons are regulated by the underground law.

Oil and Gas

The above figures reflect that Denmark in 1990 achieved a 90% self-supply of crude oil and condensate, and an increasing net export of natural gas, mainly to Sweden and northern Germany. In 1991 Denmark expects to be a net exporter of oil.

Construction Raw Materials

The increased production of sand and gravel from the sea floor reflects mainly the onset of the construction of an 18 km long fixed link between the main islands of Sjalland (where the capital is situated) and Fyn from where another bridge connects Fyn and the continent.

New Mineral Projects

In 1989-90 several heavy mineral projects were initiated. In northern Jylland, Norstral Minerals Ltd achieved a concessionary contract with the National Agency for Nature and Forests for heavy mineral exploration in an ancient raised beach ridge system of some 20 [km.sup.2]. A large number of exploration boreholes has been drilled in the concession area and economic assessment is to be completed at the latest in 1995.

Near-surface sand deposits constitute about 70% of the Danish area. The heavy mineral paragenesis is characterized by ilmenite, zircon, rutile and garnet, sometimes with substantial amounts of other heavy minerals. The grades may vary between less than 1% heavy minerals to more than 50% on, for example, exposed beaches.


                               1989      1990
Refined Sodium Chloride         549       604

('000 t) (A new production well was drilled by Dansk Salt Co. in 1989)

Construction raw materials 1988 1989(*)

('000 [m.sup.3])

Sand and gravel              28,356    28,976
Quartz sand                     179       200
Granite                         392       383
Clay                            688       801
Clay, expanded                  307       333
Diatomite                       189       188
Chalk and limestone           3,385     3,284
Peat                            320       333
Total                        33,816    34,497
Seabed sand and gravel        3,566     7,701
Total                        37,382    42,198

(*)Figures for 1989 are estimated

Jens Morten Hansen, Deputy Director, Geological Survey of Denmark, Copenhagen.

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Title Annotation:Denmark's mineral industry in 1990
Author:Hansen, Jens Morten
Publication:Mining Magazine
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Jan 1, 1991
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