(Reuters) – A years-long fight over the future of the world’s second largest silver mine between Tahoe Resources Inc and opponents of the project shows no signs of abating, creating uncertainty for the U.S. miner and its investors.
With environmental and indigenous opponents of Tahoe’s Escobal mine vowing it will never again produce silver, the tension is top of mind for Wall Street, and analysts expect the company to post its fifth consecutive quarterly loss on Tuesday.
Guatemala’s Supreme Court suspended Tahoe’s license to operate Escobal last year, ruling for an anti-mining organization that accused the country’s Ministry of Energy and Mines of failing to properly consult surrounding Xinca indigenous communities about the project.
The ruling was a sharp blow to Reno, Nevada-based Tahoe, which had derived 45 percent of its revenue from Escobal in 2016.
Shares of Tahoe have lost more than half their value since work at the mine was suspended, and the company has lost nearly $100 million in cash to mothball its Guatemala operations. Judges ordered that an indigenous consultation must be completed before Escobal can be brought back online.