By Valentina Ruiz Leotaud
Ecuador’s Ministry of Mining announced today that the country expects to receive $488 million in revenue in the next four years from the 237 mining concessions that it recently granted to private companies.
In a press release, ministry representatives highlighted the work of Lundin Gold (TSE:LUG), a Canadian company that has invested more than $400 million in the construction of different facilities around its Fruta del Norte project, in the southeastern province of Zamora Chinchipe.
The high-grade property boasts Probable Mineral Reserves of 4.8 million ounces of gold and 6.34 million ounces of silver (15.5 million tonnes at 9.67 g/t Au and 12.7 g/t Ag).
In addition to this deal, the Lenin Moreno government expects to increase its cash flow thanks to the agreement it has reached with IVN Minerales Ecuador, a subsidiary of Canadian INV Metals (TSE:INV), for the exploitation of the Loma Larga project. This project is located in the southern Azuay province and has an anticipated annual gold production of approximately 150,000 ounces over a 12-year mine life.
The Ministry’s statement also said that the Secretary of State granted 414 artisanal mining licenses and 36 small-scale mining titles. “The regulation of this sector will create over 9,000 jobs,” it reads.
At the same time, Ecuador’s National Mining Company signed three contracts with 23 small-scale miners in Muyuyacu, Azuay. The aim is to operate 33 mining sites which, company officials say, would generate 1,800 jobs.