Argentina’s Arminera week may see signing of new Federal Mining Agreement

In its regular Hunt Mining Herald newsletter, mining company Hunt Mining Corp says the mining industry is in the Argentine spotlight this week—with a landmark agreement ready to take centre stage. Argentina’s annual Arminera mining exhibition is an annual congregation of the country’s primary players, and will show off the industry’s latest advances in technology, equipment and services in Buenos Aires from Tuesday, May 9 through Thursday, May 11. On Tuesday, participants will also be celebrating the country’s annual Mining Day (which officially took place on May 7).

“But the talk of the town will surely be the much anticipated Federal Mining Agreement – which is expected to be signed by Argentina’s national government, provinces, industry players and unions. The Federal Mining Agreement is expected to enhance industry development, and attract new investments on top of the country’s $3 billion in projects already announced for 2017 and 2018. The ceremony will be held at Casa Rosada, with Argentina President Mauricio Macri and all of the country’s governors in attendance.”

The agreement, hammered out by Secretary of Mining Daniel Meilán and Federal Mining Council President Rodolfo Micone, sets out terms for responsible development, community involvement, economic benefits, environmental protection, and various legal considerations. It’s billed as a “state mining policy for the 21st century”—and Hunt Mining says it is excited about the agreement’s potential. Through its Argentine subsidiary Cerro Cazador SA, Hunt Mining, Argentina’s newest silver and gold producer, has invested more than $50 million in the Deseado Massif district, located in Santa Cruz province.

“We see the mining business as a life commitment, and we aim to build good relationships with the surrounding communities,” says Danilo Silva, President of Cerro Cazador. In March, Secretary Meilán made a presentation in Toronto, Canada to PDAC 2017, entitled Mining in Argentina: Ready to live up to it its full potential, that was based on the proposed Federal Mining Agreement. Among other things, the agreement calls for:

  • Boosting prosperity and well-being in surrounding communities;
  • Regional procurement, and stimulating engagement with local suppliers;
  • Cultivation of a local workforce; and
  • A unified mining registry, including standardization of mining rights, properties and procedures.

According to the presentation, Argentina has 31 mining projects in motion, from Jujuy all the way to Santa Cruz, anywhere from the advanced exploration to construction stages. “The nation wants mining to develop in the provinces, and provinces want their communities to develop with activity,” reads a news release from Argentina’s Ministry of Energy and Mining.