Peru is among the richest mineral nations in the world and it seems as if everyone wants to tap into its immense wealth. Much of the Andean and coastal areas, from north to south, are divided into allotments loaned to mining companies to exploit. In one southern region alone, Apurímac, mining concessions account for 58.8% of the land; in Cajamarca in the north, home to the largest gold mine in Latin America, they cover 48% of the total territory.
Mining can bring jobs and wealth to whole regions. Newmont, a U.S. company involved in the gold project in Cajamarca, stresses its mineral extraction would not jeopardize the environment. But as the protests continue, all parties involved in trying to find a way out of this and other mining conflicts—that is to say, the central and regional governments, the mining companies, and local residents—say they are ready to build a new relationship based on trust and respect.
Last month, the Peruvian government set up a permanent commission aimed at fostering this new relationship. . .View Full Article