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Using South American Experience for Optimal Mexican Growth

Julio Díaz - TDM
Mexico Mining Manager


Wed, 10/18/2017 - 23:38

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Q: How would you compare the attractiveness of Mexico as a mining jurisdiction to others you have worked in?

A: Our growth as a company has been sustained by the mining industry in South America – primarily Peru and Chile. We have been involved in projects in Chile with Grupo México and in Peru with Hudbay Minerals, Cerro Verde, Newmont Mining and major companies like Barrick Gold, Sierra Gorda and Lumina Copper. Our business is in geomembranes that are used for leaching pads and tailings dams. We also stock a geo grid, which we use to reinforce the roads for the heavy machinery they have to bear. This provides road improvement and less need for maintenance, which equates to a cost saving.

Q: What do you predict for metals prices in the next few years and how do you plan to take advantage of these opportunities?

A: The improvement in the metals prices is interesting for us. Obviously, the rise in the prices of gold, silver and copper in Mexico benefits us as part of the supply chain and gives us greater opportunities with clients. Our product is not one that is dependent on commodity prices because it is used for mine expansions and projects that are starting up. It is not subject so much to fluctuations in commodity prices but the prices remain important. We are working on an expansion project for Industrias Peñoles and metals prices do factor into the negotiations because high metals prices will allow operators more feasibility when choosing whether to expand their operations.

Q: What challenges has TDM faced on its entry into Mexico and how have you overcome these?

A: During our time initiating our mining activities in Mexico, we have had a great opportunity to get to know different companies. We are a strong company in South America, with 25 years’ experience, but in Mexico we are still a young 

company. We certainly have competitors that have been positioned in Mexico for many years so they have this competitive advantage. But our product is of the highest quality, we have global certifications, we have certified laboratories and we have some of the most modern and sophisticated plants in Latin America. Our background in South America indicates that we will experience optimal growth in Mexico. We manufacture our own products so we do not have the input of a third party in our design and production process. That means we can guarantee the quality and reduce costs. As a young company, there is a certain expectation about what our new technologies are able to do.

In South America we have worked with extremely important mining companies like Grupo México in Peru, giving us a strategic alliance with the company here in Mexico. We have participated in projects like Yanacocha in Peru, which at one point was one of the biggest gold mines in the world. We were one of the exclusive suppliers for the company so we have a great deal of expertise in the market. This year alone, we expect to be present in one or two significant mining operations in Mexico. We are already initiating operations with Goldcorp in a possible mine expansion and we are participating with Grupo México. We have strong relationships with Industrias Peñoles and Minera Autlan, among other companies.

Q: What other services do you offer the mining industry?

A: We can take care of the engineering across the lifecycle of leaching pits and tailings dams. We also use our technology to reinforce roads and we can carry out slope stabilization to minimize the chance of a landslide. All of our engineers have background that qualify them specifically for the projects on which they work, along with my 29-year experience in the industry.

We are most involved with projects at expansion stages or mine closures but we want to be more involved from the early stages of projects. There is a new open-pit gold project in Durango that is in its early stages and we are entering into negotiations with this operator to install its tailings facility and leaching pit.

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