Greenland creates clarity - not chaos

Mining companies that become involved in Greenland will not come to pay more tax than they do today. But there will be changes in how the payments are made. This is the essential aspect of the reform to be presented by the Government of Greenland in its coming autumn session, with effect for 2014.

By Jens Erik Kirkegaard, Minister of Industry and Minerals

It is important for me to emphasise this, after Maliina Abelsen in the article ”Greenland criticised for tax chaos" in the Danish newspaper Politiken has created uncertainty concerning Greenland's tax policy in the mineral resources area.

In brief, Naalakkersuisut is working with a taxation model that will include a royalty element. The basis for the model will be to ensure the companies' competitiveness, as well as revenue for the Government of Greenland. We are currently in positive dialogue with the companies on how this can be implemented in practice.

A reform of our mineral resources policy does not mean that we wish to "create tax chaos", as the article indicates. This is actually a question of ensuring due diligence, in continuation of our tradition over many years. Since 2004 we have reviewed our mineral resources policy every fifth year. So it is natural to have a new reform of our mineral resources policy in 2014.

The reforms have also been adopted by a broad majority of Inatsisartut – and on each occasion Siumut has taken the role of prime mover, in both 2004 and 2009. I very much hope that the coming reform will also be adopted by a large majority, including the Opposition's votes.

On each reform of the mineral resources policy there has been extensive preliminary work before the reform was adopted. This same open and transparent approach will also be used on this occasion. Before the proposal is submitted, there will be ample opportunity for members of Inatsisartut, the media, citizens, stakeholder organisations and NGOs to study the proposal.

Naalakkersuisut attaches great importance to openness and transparency with regard to the mineral resources policy. During the recent election campaign Siumut made a clear demand for openness regarding our mineral resources policy. The Greenland Opposition can therefore rest assured that our proposal for a reform of our mineral resources policy will take place via the open front door - and not via a half-open back door.

I look forward to dialogue on our reform of our mineral resources policy.