Agnico Eagle’s Jani Lösönen, Vice-President, Europe and Managing Director, Agnico Eagle Finland Oy and Tommi Kankkunen, General Manager of the Kittilä mine accept the Regional Development in Lapland award presented by Markus Lohi, Chairman of the Board for the Regional Council of Lapland, Aki Nevalainen, Chairman of the Regional Council of Lapland, and Mika Riipi, e County Governor of Lapland.

On Monday February 25th Agnico Eagle Finland’s Kittilä mine was recognized with the prestigious Regional Developer of Lapland award which is presented annually by the Regional Council of Lapland to a company or other organization, a community, or an individual that have made a significant positive impact in Lapland in helping to promote the development of the province.

In choosing the Kittilä mine as the award’s 2019 winner, the council expressed their opinion that they have found the mine to be a responsible example of sustainable mining, especially given its location in Lapland’s sensitive natural environment and proximity to a key tourist destination.

“Agnico Eagle Finland Oy’s Kittilä mine has been active in cooperating with the tourism industry and the municipality’s other business sectors and operators. The Kittilä mine has made strong efforts to ensure the availability of labour, and its investment policy has been responsible and goal-oriented”, said Markus Lohi, Chairman of the Board of the Regional Council of Lapland. “The mine shows a positive attitude to regional development, and it has sought to invest in the development of local activities, such as events and municipal sports services. The Kittilä mine has been ‘worth its weight in gold’ not only to the Kittilä municipality but in many ways for all of Lapland,”

Agnico Eagle’s Jani Lösönen, Vice-President, Europe and Managing Director, Agnico Eagle Finland Oy, was very pleased to see the Kittilä mine put forward for this honour: “We are extremely proud to receive this award. For us it shows that our activities are valued, and our efforts to develop the region have been recognized”, said Jani. “Respect for local communities, with the aim of promoting sustainable social and economic development in the communities around us, is one of Agnico Eagle’s principles for sustainable development.”

With approximately 500 employees, and another 500–700 contract personnel working year-round, the Kittilä mine has played a significant role in the development of the region as an employer and through of the Company’s local investments. Of the mine’s employees more than 50% live in Kittilä and at the regional level that number is even larger with more than 90% of the Company’s personnel native to Lapland.

“Our goal-oriented investment policy is based on a strong belief that the prospects of our operations in Kittilä will remain good – our operating environment will remain stable, we will be able to recruit skilled workers, and we will be able to maintain solid collaborative relationships with our interest groups – and that our exploration activities will produce results”, notes Jani. “It is important for us to be able to create something permanent, such as training, expertise, and new kinds of business activities in the region. This is part of sustainable mining operations and will have an impact far into the future.”