Image credits: Dominik Vanyi
News Article

25 Percent of Lawful Gold-Silver Mining Projects Are in Zacatecas

By Karin Dilge | Wed, 09/28/2022 - 16:41

In 2021, one out of four authorized mining projects for exploration and exploitation of silver and gold were located in Zacatecas and under construction. According to the Ministry of Energy, gold will be extracted in three of the projects, while the remaining four focus on silver. In total, 29 authorized mining projects are intending to start the exploration and exploitation of gold and silver.

The first project for gold extraction is Camino Rojo, owned by Orla Mining. It is under construction and is expected to cost US$134 million. Juanicipio, the second project from the Peñoles and MAG Silver that also considers producing zinc, is also under construction and predicted to require US$440 million of co-investment. Juanicipio has also been authorized to produce lead and is one of the four approved Mexican projects in 2021 in this regard. The third project, also from Fresnillo, is Piritas Phase 2, whose investment rose to US$155 million.

After months of delays, Fresnillo recently announced that mining operations at Juanicipio will begin in October 2022. Additionally, the company announced that despite the challenges, the project’s 2023 production guidance will not be impacted negatively.

Juanicipio consists of two main vein systems: Valdecañas and Juanicipio, both prolific epithermal silver and gold structures. The companies expect the project to produce 11.7Moz/y of silver and 43,500oz/y of gold.

According to the Coordination Unit for Extractive Activities of the Ministry of Economy, the only key mineral not authorized to be produced in Zacatecas is copper, as only six companies received a permit in Durango, Sonora, Guerrero and Baja California, most of them going to Grupo México. 

Zacatecas is the second-largest mining entity in the country. In addition, it occupies first place in silver, zinc and lead production. The state’s mining industry is the source of more than 90,000 direct and indirect jobs.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
Mining Mexico, MBN
Photo by:   Dominik Vanyi
Karin Dilge Karin Dilge Journalist and Industry Analyst