Jokkmokk Iron and Inlandsbanan collaborate on transport solution
A year ago, Jokkmokk Iron received a processing concession for an iron ore deposit in Kallak outside Jokkmokk. Since then, it has been working to find a good solution for transportation from the mine.
Now the private mining company, together with the municipality-owned Inlandsbanan AB, wants to quickly upgrade the railway between Arvidsjaur and Gällivare. This would make it possible to achieve a northern connection to the Malmbanan in Gällivare and a southern connection to the main line via Arvidsjaur-Jörn and the ports of Luleå, Piteå and Skellefteå. This would benefit many companies that need transportation solutions in the region, they say.
"We are serious about the green transition and see trains as the main transportation option and not trucks on the road. It is the most sustainable option and an expansion of the rail network is generally critical to bring about the green revolution in Norrland. I am pleased that we can now move forward with this project together with Inlandsbanan and other stakeholders in the region. After our earlier demand for information about the Inlandsbanan, it is gratifying that things are now moving and that so many people have shown interest in the issue," says Ulla Sandborgh, CEO of Jokkmokk Iron.
For Jokkmokk Iron, it is all about solving transportation. This is not the only challenge for the mining company. The plans for mining in Kallak are controversial and have been met with protests and demonstrations. Representatives of the reindeer industry and environmentalists have promised further action if the mining company goes ahead with the plans.
For Inlandsbanan, it is about strengthening Inlandsbanan and its role in the Swedish railway network.
- To meet the green industry boom in northern Sweden, a refurbished and modern Inlandsbanan is needed, I think everyone is aware of that. We now need concrete measures and constructive proposals to move forward, and it is positive that private actors such as Jokkmokk Iron see the value of the line and contribute with proactive solutions. Refurbishing Inlandsbanan is not difficult in itself, but it requires funding, which has not been forthcoming so far," says Otto Nilsson, CEO of Inlandsbanan AB.
The realization of the plans presupposes that the Swedish Transport Administration, i.e. the state, contributes money.