Regional, rural and urban development

OECD Mining Regions and Cities









 Improving well-being standards in economic, social and environmental dimensions for regions and cities
specialised in mining and extractive industries 



What's the issue?

The energy transition will increase the demand for minerals, but mining must also adjust to green and digital shifts. As mining is concentrated in specific territories, this activity and its adaptation to global changes shape regional development. Addressing the challenges and opportunities of mining specialisation requires a subnational policy approach.

  • Energy Transition: Increased mineral demand amidst green and digital shifts
  • Geographic Concentration: Mining's localized nature leads to unique regional issues
  • Policy Adaptation: Need for targeted policies considering global changes and local contexts


What can the OECD offer?

The OECD's Mining Cities and Regions Initiative serves as a platform for exchanging good practices and promoting international standards aimed at improving well-being outcomes in mining regions. The initiative also includes: 

    • Case studies with on-site missions to promote forward-thinking, and collaborate with various stakeholders in formulating policy recommendations
    • Events and workshops to share good practices and experiences
    • Data and policy toolbox to benchmark good practices in mining regions across the economic, social and environmental dimensions

 Download the flyer

OECD-DG Reform Project: Enhancing EU Mining Regions to Support the Green Transition and Secure EU Mineral Supplies

The OECD, in cooperation with DG Reform, will conduct a two-year project to enhance the EU’s mining regional ecosystems to contribute to the green transition and Europe’s strategic autonomy in mineral raw materials, while improving citizens’ well-being in mining regions. The project will support ten beneficiary regions from Finland, Greece, Portugal, Spain and Sweden with capacity-building activities, a framework for action per region and a synthesis report with common priorities and policy recommendations.

More information


The Case of Pilbara, Australia

The mining sector in the Pilbara is a global powerhouse in supplying quality iron ore that has fuelled the economic growth of the state and the country and has considerable deposits of three of the eight key minerals required for battery manufacturing. Despite its high GDP per capita and low unemployment, the Pilbara has a number of development challenges: i) high economic volatility, ii) high cost of living (iii) shortage of affordable housing iv) difficulties in recruiting labour for quality service provision and vi) high levels of inequality, particularly with respect to First Nations. This study identifies 18 recommendations across the following 4 pillars:

I. Diversifying the economy inside and outside mining with a greater focus on green-related activities.
II. Improving access and provision of housing and services in the Pilbara.
III. Enhancing well-being and development opportunities of First Nations for thriving communities.
IV. Establishing a coherent development strategy with a long-term vision for Pilbara’s development.


Policy highlights

Project flyer


Mining Regions and Cities in the Region of Antofagasta, Chile

Antofagasta is a world leader in copper and lithium production, with strategic importance for the global energy transition and for the economic development of Chile. Despite the wealth brought by mining, communities in Antofagasta lag on a number of well-being dimensions. At the same time, Antofagasta’s mining industry is entering a new phase of development, driven by the expected surge in global demand for its minerals and the imperative to adapt to the green and digital transitions. Against this backdrop, a new development vision with a long-term strategy is warranted in the region to leverage mining benefits to improve well-being standards and take advantage of the opportunities brought by the digital and green transition in mining. This study presents the diagnosis, rationale and building blocks for a new mining strategy in the region of Antofagasta.


Policy highlights: English | Spanish

Watch the video of the development strategy

The Case of Andalusia, Spain

Andalusia is the largest mining producer in Spain, the second-largest copper producer in the EU and a leader in marble and gypsum production. The region benefits from two distinct mining subsectors, the metallic mining sector (e.g. copper and zinc), which accounts for most of the regional mining production, and the non-metallic sector (ornamental rocks, aggregates and industrial minerals. This study identifies how Andalusia can build on its strengths and address current and future challenges to improve regional productivity and well-being while accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy and assisting EU climate goals.


Policy Highlights: English | Spanish

Watch the launch video: English | Spanish

The Case of Upper Norrland in Sweden

The OECD has conducted a case study of the mining regions of Västerbotten and Norrbotten, which constitute the larger region of Upper Norrland. Västerbotten and Norrbotten are strategically important in a European context because of their role in supplying raw materials and associated value-adding. The study assesses policies, governance structures and implementation mechanisms related to sustainable supply of raw materials, opportunities for diversification, the regulatory framework and engagement with the Sami People of Sweden. 


Policy Highlights

Watch the launch video

Case of Outokumpu, North Karelia in Finland

OECD has conducted a case study on the mining region of North Karelia and the municipality of  Outokumpu in Finland. The study provides recommendations to mobilize the region's assets and address development challenges, as well as to improve economic diversification, welfare and entrepreneurship.


Policy Highlights


Toolkit to measure well-being in mining regions

This paper develops a framework to measure well-being standards in OECD regions specialising in mining activities. It explores the relevant indicators to measure well-being for selected OECD mining regions across the three dimensions of well-being: economic, social and environmental and compares their trends with those of other regions.

Read the paper

Enhancing Well-being in Mining Regions - Key Issues and Lessons for Developing Indicators

This paper provides analytical background and input for discussion for the 3rd Meeting of OECD Regions and Cities in Skellefteå, Sweden. It proposes the development of a new set of indicators to measure the well-being of mining regions and asks partners to provide feedback and share leading practice examples related to the well-being challenges identified. 

Read the paper

Leading practices for resource benefit sharing and development for and with Indigenous communities

This OECD working paper summarises leading practices for benefit sharing, workforce development, and business and governance development for and with Indigenous peoples.

Read the paper

4th - Karratha, Australia, 20-23 June 2023

245 participants from 12 countries came together in Karratha to discuss topics related to two pillars; diversification and green value chains and liveable and sustainable mining communities.


Read the proceedings

3rd - Skellefteå, Sweden, 2019

The 3rd OECD Meeting of Mining Regions and Cities was held in Skellefteä, Sweden in June 2019. The event in Skelleftea focused on how mining can be a driver of improved regional well-being and also contribute to environmentally sustainable regions for future and current generations.

Read the proceedings


Read the pre-conference record


2nd - Darwin, Northern Territory Australia, 2018

The 2nd OECD Meeting of Mining Regions and Cities was held in Darwin, Australia on 21-22 November. The event included a special focus on Indigenous peoples, and mining, resources and regional development in the context of Southeast Asia and helped define the forward plan for the OECD Mining Regions and Cities initiative.

Read the proceedings


1st - Antofagasta, Chile, 2017

The first OECD Mining Regions event was held in Antofagasta, Chile in October 2017 and was attended by 275 participants across 14 countries.

Read the proceedings


More information



EU Mining Regions Kick-off Meeting

The kick-off meeting of the OECD-DG Reform TSI project Enhancing EU mining regional ecosystems to support the green transition and secure mineral raw materials supply gathered representatives from the ten participating regions in the project, the OECD and the EU Commission, as well as experts to discuss the scope of this project and relevance to support EU mining regions in attaining a sustainable development for the EU.



Download the 10 key meeting takeaways


The ten participating regions are:

  • Finland: Lapland, North Karelia, Oulu, Kainuu, Central Ostrobothnia
  • Greece: Region of Central Greece
  • Portugal: Centro Portugal, Alentejo
  • Spain: Andalusia
  • Sweden: Örebro



Launch: Toolkit to measure well-being in mining regions

Read the paper

Kick-off event - Towards a Regional Mining Strategy in Antofagasta, Chile

Description: Between 24-28 October,  the OECD conducted the first mission of the OECD mining regions and cities supporting Antofagasta, Chile to develop the first regional mining strategy. The mission promoted several spaces of dialogue among mining companies (big and small), providers, academia and communities (e.g. Indigenous representatives), including:

For more information visit the website of the project


The virtual discussion was organised on 23 June 2020 jointly with MIREU to explore the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on mining regions and cities and the responses and opportunities emerging from this crisis in the short and long term.  This virtual discussion served as a platform to exchange experiences and best practices from OECD mining regions and cities in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. 

For more information visit the MIREU website.


OECD Mining Regions and Cities Workshop Seville, Andalucía, Spain

In October 2019 the OECD Mining Regions and Cities Initiative held a workshop on: fostering local innovation and developing value chains in a mining context. The workshop was the first step in developing an OECD Mining Regions and Cities Case Study of Andalucía. 

Read the summary record  



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