Copper King Pushes Gender Diversity — With All-Male Board – by Laura Millan Lombrana (Bloomberg News – May 28, 2018)

(Bloomberg) — As it battles to remain the world’s biggest copper producer, Codelco just achieved a new, less enviable mantle — the only major mining company with an all-male board and senior management team.

On Friday, Chilean President Sebastian Pinera tapped executive Juan Benavides to be chairman of the state-owned company. Earlier this month, he appointed Hernan de Solminihac and Patricio Briones as directors, replacing Dante Contreras and Laura Albornoz, then the only woman on the nine-member board. Chile is the biggest copper-mining nation.

Gender diversity is one of Codelco’s strategic objectives, according to its annual report. But the company has no women in top management, including vice presidents or mine managers. Women make up just 5.4 percent of the company’s senior administrators and 9.5 percent of its total workforce. To be sure, that last figure is higher than the average in Chilean mines.

By comparison, BHP Billiton Ltd., Vale SA and Anglo American Plc have three women on their boards, Antofagasta Plc and Freeport-McMoRan Inc. have two.

When asked about the lack of women on Codelco’s board, the mining ministry referred to previous comments by Mining Minister Baldo Prokurica: “We are fulfilling the commitment of appointing the best people to state-owned companies.”

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