On December 23rd, 2021, Secretary Roy Cimatu of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) signed the Department Administrative Order No. 2021-40, eliminating the country’s four-year ban on open-pit mining for copper, gold, silver, and complex ores.
Australian mining and exploration company RTG Mining, which operates multiple mining projects in the Philippines, has welcomed the decision.
“The DENR order covers all mining tenement holders that will adopt a surface mining method and sets strict conditions and requirements for those that would use the open-pit method to ensure all mining is undertaken to world’s best practices. We are pleased with the DENR’s continued efforts to encourage the mining industry,” the company said in an ASX announcement.
“The Mabilo Project developed in line with the DENR’s directives, has the capacity to stimulate economic growth in the local communities, the Province in which the project is located and the Philippines more broadly.”
The Mabilo Project is a high-grade copper-gold project located in the Camarines Norte Province, Eastern Luzon, Philippines.
The company also operates the Bunawan Project which consists of four project sites in the Pacific Cordillera volcanic arc’s mineral province in the Philippines, as well as the Nalesbitan Project, located 15 kilometres west of Mabilo.
The lifting of the ban, according to the DENR order, is meant to “revitalize the mining industry and usher in significant economic benefits to the country by providing raw materials for the construction and development of other industries and by increasing employment opportunities in rural areas.”
Image credit: https://www.rtgmining.com/projects/mabilo/