Chile’s mining industry has received the environmental permission to develop 82 new mining projects this year, up from 78 projects in the prior year. Mining investment for the new projects tallied at $23.3bn, up 20pc from $19.5bn from the last year, the Chilean Minister of Mining, Baldo Prokurica, said in a statement on Nov 17.
One of the highlights is the $4.3bn Desarrollo Minera Centinela, developed by Antofagasta Minerals (AMS), which is expected to produce 400,000mt of fine copper annually. Also, the RT Súlfuros copper project by Codelco, at an investment of $2.1bn, will process 2.8bn tons with an average copper grade of 0.51pc, Codelco said without disclosing further details. In addition, the Sierra Gorda open-pit copper and molybdenum mine in Chile, will have an investment of $2bn and produce 220,000mt of additional copper in the medium-term.
Chile copper production is expected to fall by 1.2pc to 5.71mn mt in 2020, from 5.78mn mt in 2019, according to figures from the Chilean Copper Commission (Cochilco). Prices reached $3.18/lb on Thursday, Nov 19, up by 0.78pc compared to the prior day, according to data from Cochilco.