By Peter Tase
In March 14-15, the city of Antofagasta, Chile, hosted the fifth bilateral meeting between Chile and Peru focused on the mining industry and research. This event was led by Chilean Mining Assistant Secretary, Mr. Francisco Orrego and Peruvian Deputy Minister of Mining, Mr. Guillermo Shinno.
Mr. Orrego expressed his confidence “that both countries can hold such meetings regularly in order to address common challenges and project [both countries] as the center of mining development, which would facilitate further development of [the two] countries.”
In his public statement, Peruvian Deputy Minister stated that: “[he] is very happy to attend this event and hope[s] to reach a common agenda with Chile. There are many challenges faced currently by the mining industry and [he] hopes that they will be addressed in partnership with Chilean partners.”
Both authorities expressed high interest to continue a dynamic collaboration between Santiago and Lima, focused particularly within the two countries’ mining ministries. This conference awakened a greater interest among the corporations from both sides of the border as well as other public – private agencies, so they can better exchange information and share the last developments in mining industry.
This event brought a platform where research and information can be shared and further studied. It allowed the bi-national delegations, composed of nine Peruvian representatives and eight Chilean experts, to visit the Radomiro Tomic division of Codelco, which operates on high standards of security up to 3000 meters of altitude, making it become a world reference.
Additionally, representatives from both countries visited the Don Bosco Technical Industrial College and Mining Industrial Training Center (CISM) in Antofagasta, with the objective to visit specialized educational centers focused in the extraction industry.
This bilateral initiative was initiated 10 years ago from a joint agreement between the Chilean Mining and Energy Ministry and the Peruvian Ministry of Mining. The next year’s meeting is expected to be held in the land of former Incan Empire, Peru.
According to Lima’s mining experts, this year will be highly productive as compared to the previous year. In January, 2013, there was a substantial growth in Peruvian mining sector, if compared to January, 2012: Iron production grew at 12.91 percent, zinc experienced a growth of 8.83 percent, and lead production grew at 6.15 percent. In Peru, the production of Silver has also experienced growth at the beginning of the year; it reached over 266 thousand kilograms or a 7.27 percent of production growth in this fine mineral. This bilateral partnership in the sector of mining, is expected to gradually impulse a greater bilateral cooperation among the two pacific countries in other strategic sectors of their respective economies.