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Reactions after signing of mining agreements in Canada

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Reactions after signing of mining agreements in Canada

There are reactions after the signing of six mining investment agreements that were made official, this Monday, March 4, by Daniel Noboa, president of Ecuador, during his visit to Canada.

The objective of the Executive and the Ministry of Energy and Non-Renewable Natural Resources (MERNNR) is for foreign companies to invest at least 4.8 billion dollars in the Ecuadorian mining sector.

With this same objective, the National Government is preparing reforms for the creation of a dispute resolution mechanism between the State and investors, with the purpose of generating legal trust.

One of the government initiatives in this regard is to make changes to the Constitution of Ecuador to make way for the implementation of legal tools to allow international arbitration in case of disputes.

Cuenca Mining Chamber is in favor of mining agreements in Canada

“We are very pleased with this position that the president (Daniel Noboa) has taken to give frontal support to what mining activity is…” said Patricio Vargas, president of the Mining Chamber of Cuenca.

He added: “it has been determined that it is necessary for the country’s economy to have investments of magnitude and quality, since these will generate employment, productive chains…”.

For Vargas, supporting mining activity and investment is necessary and even urgent, taking into account the economic crisis that the country is experiencing, in addition to the lack of jobs.

He indicated that the Cordillera that crosses Ecuador is very rich in natural resources and he believes that there are considerable deposits of minerals that can later be converted into mines.

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“There is the possibility of new concessions, since there is still a lot of space to explore and this can be done once the mining cadastre of Ecuador is back in place…” he mentioned.

According to Vargas, the Río Blanco mining project, of the company Junefield Ecuagoldmining South America, which is in Molleturo and Chaucha, is in international arbitration. This is one of the three mining projects that are in Azuay.

Water advocates against mining deals in Canada

Kléver Calle, a member of the Yasunidos collective, in Cuenca, considers that Noboa’s position is contrary to what the population has decided democratically in the latest popular consultations.

For example, in the consultation on February 7, 2021, almost 80% of the population of Cuenca said yes to the prohibition of mining activities near water sources.

Likewise, on March 24, 2019, at least 86.79% of the population of Girón voted against continuing mining activities in that territory in the Loma Larga project, formerly known as Quimsacocha.

Likewise, on August 21, 2023, almost 58.98% of voters throughout the country voted in favor of paralyzing all oil activities within Block 43 – ITT, of Yasuní.

“The will of the population is very clear and the president has to respect this, what he is doing is absurd. The country has already said: we do not want the ecosystems to be destroyed because they are our life…”, he emphasized. (CSM)-(I)

Three mining projects in Cuenca

Until the second quarter of 2023, the Loma Larga mining project had not changed its useful life: 12 years. It is still in the economic evaluation phase.

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Construction of the mine at this location is projected to begin in 2024 and enter production in 2026. The concessionaire is Dundee Precious Metals Ecuador SA, a subsidiary of Dundee Precious Metals.

The Río Blanco mining project, which is in Molleturo and Chaucha, in Cuenca, is detained by a court order. It is run by the company Junefield Ecuagoldmining South America, from China.

The camp of this mining company was set on fire in 2018 by some residents of the area and the workers who were there had to leave out of fear. This place was practically abandoned.

Ruta del Cobre, the third mining project in Cuenca, is located in Chaucha. It is concessioned to the mining company Ruta del Cobre, whose parent company is Grupo México.

It consists of three concessions, with their specific names: Janeth1, Janeth 2 and Janeth 3. The first is licensed for advanced exploration while the other two are for initial exploration.


Río Blanco is a mining concession that began in 1993 by the company Rio Tinto-Zinc Corporation (RTZ), from Great Britain.

Related notes

How is mining in Azuay?

Illegal mining affected almost 800 hectares in the Amazon

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