Security & Strategic Review - January 2024

PANAMA: Environmentalists hail ruling against key mine

Environmental organisations in Panama and beyond have claimed a major victory after Panama’s supreme court (CSJ) struck down legislation in late November authorising a new contract between Canadian mining company First Quantum Minerals (FQM)’s Panamanian subsidiary, Minera Panamá S.A. (MPSA), and the Panamanian government regarding the Cobre Minera copper mine. The CSJ found the contract violated no less than 25 articles of Panama’s constitution, ranging from the right to live in a pollution-free environment to the obligation of the state to promote the economic and political engagement of indigenous and rural communities. Here we consider some of the concerns raised by the environmental lobby regarding the mine ahead of the CSJ’s ruling.

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