New Modifications to the Mining LawBy Paloma Duran | Tue, 01/11/2022 - 12:52
A new initiative to reform Mexico´s Mining Law aimed to recover and improve the way mining work is being drafted by MORENA´s Senator Napoleón Gómez Urrutia. The new initiative will give the State greater control over critical resources, as private companies are accused of acting irresponsibly and generating a negative impact.
Gómez accused the mining industry for being an irresponsible and dirty industry. According to him, the industry is not contributing to the development of the industry and in fact, it pollutes the environment and does not treat workers well since it puts their safety and health at risk. Gómez said this situation occurs due to past governments, which granted endless concessions to private companies that continue to exploit the country's resources without generating a positive impact.
“A change cannot be postponed, as concessions have been granted for up to a century. Many of them are sold, bringing enormous benefits to privates. Foreign mining companies that have these concessions believe they are the owners. They are not,” Gomez said.
Gómez explained that President López Obrador has ensured a viable path of the country and the industry by not granting new concessions. However, there is still danger with the concessions that have already been granted. Consequently, Gómez said that the industry must change through new legislation, which responsibly fills all the gaps in the Mining Law that now benefits foreign and private companies. Gómez said the new law that is being drafted seeks to sensitize everyone about the impact of mining, with the aim of having better results and strategies for critical resources such as lithium.
“A complete analysis of how mining should develop is necessary, since it should not only seek quick profits, as it has been done for years. The three richest men in this country: Slim, Baillères and Larrea, are mining entrepreneurs, but what about the rest of the people?”
For years, the mining sector has sought to change its misconceptions since it is one of the industries that contributes the most to the development of the country, especially in marginalized communities. According to CAMIMEX, the mining sector is present in 696 communities, 212 municipalities and 24 states across Mexico. It contributes 8.3 percent of the industrial GDP and 2.3 percent of the national GDP, which makes it a key industry in terms of job creation and social development.
In addition, the Chamber has stressed that mining is a clean and responsible industry and, therefore, people should not believe in misinformation that circulates about the industry. “Past mining practices are not the same as current practices and the laws and circumstances have also changed. The past must be judged based on facts from the past and we must learn from the present and move forward toward a better future,” said Karina Rodríguez Matus, Partner of Rodríguez, Matus & Feregrino.