Peru’s violent protests imperil 30% of its copper output – by James Attwood (Bloomberg News – January 27, 2023)

An upsurge in the violent protests wracking Peru is crimping copper output in the world’s No. 2 supplier, with about 30% of its production at risk at a time of low global stocks and high prices.

One copper mine is offline after demonstrators stormed the site, another has seen shipments choked by roadblocks, while others have slowed operations as a precaution to manage scarce supplies of fuel and other inputs, according to industry group SNMPE.

“The situation of protests and the escalation of violence have affected the industry,” Magaly Bardales, who heads a mining sector committee at the association, said in a telephone interview. “We hope an understanding, a dialog with authorities, can be found to provide a swift solution.”

Demonstrators have blocked roads across Peru and clashed with security forces in more than six weeks of violent turmoil that began when President Pedro Castillo was impeached after he attempted to dissolve congress.

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