As reported by the Minister of Energy and Mines, Oscar Vera, during his visit to Cusco, since Monday morning traffic in the South Road Corridor was normalized to 100%, where the main company affected, Las Bambas, set a record of 57 days of paralyzed production only in 2022, and with it more than a year and a half without production since it began operations, in 2016.
After the agreement of the social organizations to pause the protest demonstrations against the political and social situation in the country, traffic could be restored in the so-called mining corridor.
It should be remembered that for several days the areas of Velille, Colquemarca and Capacmarca were taken over by dozens of protesters demanding the resignation of Dina Boluarte as president, the closure of Congress and the immediate advancement of general elections.
It was on the platform conguya Where are company vehicles stored? The Bambas that a group of demonstrators tried to enter by force, for which they were repelled by the forces of order. This generated tension on the days of protest. At the moment, these areas are free.
Also, in the community of Tuntumalocated in the district of Velille (Chumbivilcas), despite the fact that it was reported that there would be no truce, the protesters paused their claims against Las Bambas.
This fact was taken advantage of by the police officers to clean the road that remained blocked for almost two months. This way, the restoration of the transport of minerals from the companies Hudbay and Antapaccay was confirmed. In the case of Las Bambas, their activities have returned to normal since Sunday.
The closure of roads in the towns of Challhuahuacho, Cotabambas province, in apurimacand Thorn in CuscoThey also took a break for the Christmas and New Year holidays. However, the protest actions would be resumed as of January 3, the date on which the region’s social organizations warned of an escalation in their demands against the new government.
Las Bambas, in the eye of the storm
In the case of Las Bambas, it should be noted that the Blockade of the South Road Corridor it generates million-dollar losses not only for the national businessman, but also for the Apurímac region itself, as well as its provincial and district municipalities.
There are more than 75,000 families that depend on the direct, indirect and induced jobs that the operation of mmg generates, as well as hundreds of small and medium-sized entrepreneurs from Apurímac and Cusco that make up the Las Bambas value chain.
Mining sources told La República that since the start of operations in 2016, Las Bambas has experienced 597 days of road blockade, that is, more than 18 months with the roads taken over by pickets. The longest of them forced the stoppage of operations for more than a month at the end of 2021.
“So far in 2022, Las Bambas has accumulated 186 days of road blockades, that is, more than four months. Let’s not forget that, in addition, this year they had 57 days of paralyzed production,” the source said.
A day of paralysis of Las Bambas supposes for Apurímac a loss of no less than S/3.2 million for royalties and mining canon. Also, the Peruvian state stops exporting US$9.5 million per day in copper and other minerals, translated into a drop in collection of S/5.2 million every 24 hours (S/4 million for Income Tax and S/ 1.2 million for contractual royalties). Critical.
Economic progress is less due to stoppage of mines
The national gross domestic product (GDP) would close 2022 with an advance of between 2.8% and 2.9%, estimated the Minister of Economy, Alex Contreras. This forecast is less than the 3.3% projected by the institution.
According to him MEFthis lower forecast is due to the fact that there were important effects in 2022, especially in the mining sector, where several mines were paralyzed.
In Contreras’s opinion, if these interruptions had not occurred, the peruvian economy would have grown 4%, even above the region, he asserted.
It is important to mention that Peru is the world’s second largest producer of copper and silver.
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