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PABC statement on open pit mining in the Philippines

Officers of APBC the Sydney counterpart of PABC in Manila

THE MANILA based Philippines Australia Business Council (PABC) released through the Sydney based Australia Philippines Business Council (APBC) an explanation why it welcomes the decision of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) of the Philippine government the issuance lifting the ban on the use of open pit method of mining for the extraction of copper, gold, silver, and/or complex ores.

PABC is the counterpart of APBC.

Manila based PABC said together with the earlier lifting of the moratorium on new mineral agreements between the government and private contractors, this signals that the Philippine mining sector is once again open for business for local and foreign direct investment.

Manila’s PABC is hopeful that this paves the way for the long overdue development of the Philippine mining sector which holds tremendous potential to contribute to the country’s economic recovery and growth. Open pit mining is an internationally recognized mining method.

Archived news reports said the Philippines lifted a four-year-old ban on open-pit mining for copper, gold, silver and complex ores December last year, marking the second landmark policy move as the government tries to revitalise the industry

PABC said the DENR issuance sets out the needed conditions and requirements for the conduct of open pit mining, including (i) that the use of surface mining method shall not pose possible hazard to public health and safety resulting from ground failure or physical deterioration, and (ii) that it shall not release hazardous chemicals into the environment, or the proponent has presented proven and acceptable techniques to control the same through internationally accepted containment, collection, and treatment methods that will outlive the life of the mine.

PABC explains that the tremendous contribution of the mining sector to developing countries like Indonesia and Chile where the industry contributed around 6% and 10% of the total Gross Domestic Product (“GDP”), respectively, the Philippine mining sector has the potential to contribute in the same manner to the country’s GDP.

PABC said in  Australia and Canada, mining development can lead a nation into developed country status.

The PABC is pleased to have contributed to the continuous initiative from the mining industry to adhere to international best mining industry practices. Together with like-minded mining professional and industry organizations, the PABC was instrumental in the crafting of the Philippine Mineral Reporting Code (the equivalent of the Joint Ore Reserves Code of Australia) and its updating to adhere to the latest international public reporting standards for exploration results, mineral resources, and ore reserves.

Board of Trustees of Manila based PABC are  Dennis Quintero, Chairman; Thomas Aquino & Teodoro Villanueva, Vice Chairmen; Violy Searby, Treasurer; J. Ernesto Villaluna, Jr., Michelle Searby, Roberto Lim, Frederick Chua, Ramon de Vera, Herbert Tan, Sixto Benedicto.