LatinNews Daily - 19 July 2023

In brief: Ecuador’s gov’t signs key mining agreement

*Ecuador’s mining and energy minister, Fernando Santos, along with deputy mining minister, Juan José Espinosa, and the vice-president of the Chinese mining company EcuaCorriente S.A. (ECSA), Mauricio Núñez, have signed the second addition to the mining and exploitation contract for the Mirador mine located in Zamora Chinchipe province. The agreement aims to increase production of copper in the mine from 60,000 to 140,000 tonnes (t) per day. Ecuador’s government led by President Guillermo Lasso and ECSA signed the initial agreement for the Mirador mine project in 2012, and the company began its production in 2019, becoming the first large-scale mining project in Ecuador according to the mining and energy ministry.  With this second addition, Santos stated that Ecuador would become a key global actor in the production of copper. He emphasised that the Mirador project is expected to attract investment of US$650m which will boost the local and national economy, as well as generate thousands of jobs in the future. The ministry of economy and finance must complete a fiscal sustainability report before the contract amendment can enter into effect.

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