Second mining audit still pending
The second round of government-led mining audit, which aims to go after big mining companies, already has a budget but the memorandum of agreement (MOA) between the Mining Industry Coordinating Council (MICC) and the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) is still being finalized.
“The discussion with DAP is still ongoing,” Environment Undersecretary for Mining Concerns Analiza Rebuelta-Teh said. “We will know the start date of the audit as soon as the MOA with DAP is finalized”.
To recall, MICC has also tapped the expertise of DAP to implement and manage the review process for the 26 mines ordered closed or suspended under the term of former Environment Secretary Regina Paz Lopez.
Aside from handling the review, DAP also facilitated the screening of consultants and experts who comprised the members of the five technical review teams (TRTs) that assessed various aspects of the mining operations that were under scrutiny.
Teh said that once the MOA is out, the MICC — led by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Department of Finance (DOF) — will start drafting the work plan for the mining audit.
The DENR and the DOF are expected to release P10 million each to carry the review.
A DENR official said before that budget was “holding the continuation” of the audit.
During the first round of MICC-led mining audit, the DOF requested a budget of P50 million from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for the conduct of the review.
As much as 17 mining companies will be reviewed in the second batch of MICC audit. Of this, 12 mining companies already passed the audit carried by Lopez in 2016.
Based on the list provided by the DENR, mining companies to be reviewed in the second round of audit include Philex Mining Corporation, Agata Mining Ventures, Inc., Rio Tuba Nickel Mining Corporation, SR Metals, Inc., Apex Mining Company, Cagdianao Mining Corporation, and Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corporation.