Peru’s mining investment portfolio currently amounts to an estimated US$ 64 billion, and Chinese investment projects account for US$ 23 billion of this total.
Some of these investment projects are considered expansion projects, like Marcona, which involves a US$ 1.5 billion investment, and Toromocho, which involves an investment of US$ 1.32 billion. On the other hand, Shouxin will invest US$239 million in its tailings recovery project. Peru’s mining investment portfolio also includes ongoing projects the Environmental Impact Assessment of which has already been approved like Las Bambas, with an estimated investment of US$ 10 billion, Toromocho, with a US$ 3.5 billion investment, and Pampa de Pongo, with a US$ 1.5 billion investment. It should also be pointed out that as far as mining exploration is concerned, three projects have been identified: Don Javier, a US$600 million investment project, Galeno, a US$ 2.5 million investment project, and Río Blanco, a US$ 1.5 billion investment project.
It is worth pointing out that the above-mentioned mining projects are being carried out in an environmentally responsible manner. Concerning this matter, it is worth mentioning the construction of the Kingsmill Tunnel water treatment plant to avoid impacting the Yauli River, a US$45 million project which is part of the Toromocho project and is being implemented in coordination with the State; the relocation of the town of Morococha, which required building 1450 houses to lodge approximately 5,000 people. The Las Bambas project requires building and implementing the town of “Nueva Ferabamba”, which will include recreational, housing and service areas, health infrastructure, education infrastructure, etc.
What’s the driving force behind the surge of Chinese investment in Peru? Basically, China’s Urbanization Plan, which will trigger a strong demand for minerals from our region. This plan is intended to increase the proportion of permanent urban residents in China by 70 to 100 million by investing in housing, railways, highways, and basic services.
In order to encourage investment growth in the mining sector, we must create a favorable investment climate, with stable legal, political and economic conditions, to the extent our mining policy is under public scrutiny.
The mining sector has several fronts: the State, mining business people, and the population. Permanent coordination is required from these three fronts. All those who have worked in the mining sector for a long time can attest to the fact that a number of legal rules have been promulgated during the last two decades and that priority has been given to the issuance of regulations related to the mining industry. To have the existing laws, world changes have been carefully analyzed. We can say that at some point in time efforts focused on people’s safety and health in the mining sector. The focus of attention then shifted to the protection of the environment, and efforts are now focused on the social field. Therefore, when dealing with a delicate activity like mining, which is considered a high-risk activity, we must exchange experiences and focus on a single objective: drive our economy forward bearing in mind people’s interests, and facilitate investment projects undertaken by companies that wish to engage in mining.