DOF Forms Team to Make Mining Site Active Again
The Department of Finance (DOF) is forming an interagency team to look at how mining assets can be privatized given the many legal issues surrounding these. According to DOF Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, the team is composed of representatives from the DOF, Mines and Geosciences Bureau, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the Privatization and Management Office (PMO) and the office of the Solicitor-General.
Among these idle mining sites include the copper-gold project of the Maricalum Mining Corp. in Negros Occidental, the nickel mines of the Nonoc Mining and Industrial Corp. (Nonoc Mining) in Surigao del Norte and the gold- and copper-rich North Davao Mining Property (North Davao Mining) in Davao del Norte. Others are the Basay Mining Corp. (Basay Mining) in Negros Oriental and the nickel mine once operated by the Marinduque Mining and Industrial Corp. (MMIC Bagacay Mine) in Western Samar.
Dominguez said that with the revival of these mining sites, the economy can bloom which can lead to generating more revenues and more job opportunities for workers. He said that this industry “provides jobs in [rural] areas where there are no other alternative jobs” available.
He said in a virtual press conference, “Definitely, we are pushing for the revival of the mining industry.”
PMO said that some of these mining sites were once successful but failed to settle their debts. The government then auctioned off these firms but the highest bidder failed to fulfil his obligations - which led to decades of litigation which caused these mining sites to become idle.