Experts warn of civil unrest in Argentina as it readies to lift ban on open pit mining – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – February 13, 2018)

Argentina’s national government is pressing ahead with its intentions to make of mining one of the pillars of job creation, and it’s holding talks with the leaders of the three provinces that declined to sign a 2017 mining act, which harmonizes taxes and regulations in hopes of attracting investment.

Mining secretary, Daniel Meilán, told local paper El Diario that the government wants the leaders of Chubut, La Pampa and La Rioja, to adopt federal mining regulations and reactivate major projects that have been halted for years.

Among those proposed mines currently stalled is Canada’s Pan American Silver’s (TSX:PAAS) Navidad project in Chubut, which has been on hold since 2013, when it ran afoul of provincial rules banning the use of cyanide and open-pit mining.

According to Agencia Digital de Noticias, President Mauricio Macri recently met in Davos with Pan American’s chairman Ross Beaty, promising his support to reopen the dialogue around the project and so create new sources of employment in the southern province.

Jimena Blanco, head of Americas, Politics at consultancy firm Verisk Maplecroft, is not very positive about the outcome of the potential end of the open pit mining ban in Chubut.

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