VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC DIALOGUES WITH THE ECUADORIAN MINING SECTOR.

This April 24, 2019 the Vice-president of the Republic, Otto Sonnenholzner received the representatives of 20 mining companies and the authorities of the Ecuadorian Mining Chamber, this audience came about with the objective to present the mining sector´s economic and social projections as well as their interest to develop an environmentally sustainable and supported activity.

Vice-president Sonnenholzner manifested that the Government maintains an openness to dialogue with all sectors that contribute to the country´s development, highlighted the mining potential that Ecuador has and the necessity of mining with adequate environmental control to protect the water sources, like mining concessions of the first level that operate under international standards. In his words, stressing the importance of a firm hand with illegal mining and transition to formal and technical mining that will contribute benefits for all Ecuadorians. Richard Martinez minister of Finance and Economy was also part of this meeting reminding the investors the support and political will from the Central Government so this sector can develop in a favorable way, under a framework of principles of respect for nature and supporting the Economic and Prosperity Plan.

Carlos Perez, minister of Energy and Non Renewable Natural Resources, announced the imminent issue of a mining policy that will bring legal security in the contracts and agreements with all companies that come to the country to invest and work, he also indicated that efforts are being made to issue regulations regarding the popular consultations, mining in water sources and an update to the Ecuadorian cadastral map, among others.

Santiago Yepez Davila president of the Ecuadorian Mining Chamber, exposed the economic figures of mining (2017-2021) where income of 10.000 million dollars are expected, which would constitute the second item for the country´s sustenance after oil, the mining sector development is already showing , a clear example is the province of Zamora, where the projects of Fruta del Norte and Mirador are located, for 2019 the GDP has increased in 35 points.

In reference to the social footprint that mining has left up to now, Ron Hoschstein president of Lundin Gold presented the project Fruta del Norte, that has been recognized at national and international levels for its socially responsible practices. Catering Las Peñas, presented as an example of a success story, is now the third biggest company in Zamora Chinchipe, this organization was started by a group of 5 ex workers that thanks to the support and training received from Lundin Gold is now a company that employs 270 people.

Andrew Taunton Vicepresident of Sol Gold presented the attendants with the Cascabel project which is considered a world class discovery, the income that represents will allow the country to alleviate the fiscal burden and allow it to invest in social development plans like road construction, hospitals and schools among others.

With the start of production of the strategic projects of Fruta del Norte, Mirador, Loma Larga and Rio Blanco it is expected an increase of 1.4% to 4% of the GDP, also it is expected the creation of 25.000 direct and indirect employment opportunities. All the companies that attended the meeting are committed to develop a mining that constitutes one of the supporting pillars of the country, framing their work in the mitigation of environmental impact, social and economic responsibility for an Ecuador that is recovering from a period of economic recession.

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