SANTIAGO – Chilean state mining company Codelco, the world’s largest producer of copper, has large enough reserves of the red metal to continue operations for the next 70 years, CEO Nelson Pizarro said at an industry event.
“The good news is that we own an extraordinary base, with ore reserves at 20 billion tons, which contain 100 million tons of fine copper,” he said at the Exponor mining fair in the northern city of Antofagasta.
“There is a persistent problem, which is that we still have fatalities,” Pizarro said. “The only option in this subject that we have considered so many times is to keep our efforts up and to advance toward supervision in the field.”
The CEO reviewed the six structural projects Codelco is planning and highlighted the relevance of innovation and sustainability in the company’s work.
Codelco will continue to pursue the technical capability to increase the use of renewable energy and experiment with substituting seawater for fresh water in its operations, Pizarro said.
The company earned a profit of $3 billion last year, down 22 percent from 2013, and plans to invest about $3.95 billion in 2015.