New Proposal for Mining Agency in GuerreroBy Karin Dilge | Mon, 02/14/2022 - 17:24
An engineer associated with a prominent local university proposed to design a Mining Agency in Guerrero while speaking at a regional consultation forum aiming to establish the State Development Plan for 2022-2027. Guerrero has recently attracted more attention from investors and companies because of its great geological potential. Building such an agency would boost the state’s opportunities in the mining sector.Er
Erik Bustamante, a mining engineer at Universidad Autónoma de Guerrero, suggested the creation of a General Mining Agency with an added Participative Council. The goal would be to stimulate responsible and sustainable mining practices that comply with the highest regulatory standards. The agency would also be able to manage funds received from taxes paid by miners to support economic and social development in mining communities.
Furthermore, the proposal aims to develop a mining hub in Iguala, which has a strategic position in the region and could therefore serve as a base to visit nearby operations. This would also help to generate a positive relationship between communities and mining operations.
By creating an additional Administrative Council, the goal is to address access to education, as well as to guarantee gender equity and social inclusion of senior citizens. The council would also look after the rights of people with disabilities and the LGBTQ+ community.
Experts believe that Guerrero will be a hotspot for exploration projects, as many areas have not yet been properly explored. If the sector’s regulatory uncertainty is addressed, there would be greater opportunities to develop the states’ mining capacity. In the meantime, a local agency could help mitigate this uncertainty.
Despite Guerrero’s potential, having good community relationships, improving security and dealing with an ambiguous legal framework has been challenging for the private sector. An example is the case of Minera Cuzcatlán, which has been accused of generating a negative environmental impact. The company has said it has fully complied with legal, fiscal, regulatory, labor and environmental obligations during its more than 15 years of operation in the country. In addition, it said that the allegations lack evidence and scientific support. Nevertheless, the situation prevented the company from progressing its projects, reported MBN.
In 2020, Guerrero ranked fourth among other mining states in gold production, representing 13.8 percent of the national output. In addition to gold, the state produces silver, copper, iron, lead and zinc. David Jones, a world-renowned geologist, estimated that the area is likely to hold over 10Moz of gold still to be discovered. This would cement Guerrero as a top gold-producing state, ranking second behind Sonora and competing with Zacatecas and Chihuahua, states that have benefitted from a more productive mining history.