Peru’s government will declare a state of emergency near Southern Copper’s (NYSE:SCCO) Cuajone mine, Prime Minister Anibal Torres said Wednesday, which could lead to the restoration of production at the mine.
The government was running out of patience with protests against mining companies that had shut down 20% of the country’s copper output.
Cuajone suspended operations on February 28 after residents of a nearby community shut down water supply to the mine, demanding financial compensation and a share of future profits.
Protests spread during the week to MMG’s giant Las Bambas mine, which produced nearly 300K metric tons in 2021 while Cuajone added another 170K tons.
Protests reportedly began Wednesday at Glencore’s (OTCPK:GLCNF) (OTCPK:GLNCY) Antapaccay mine but apparently had not blocked a key transport road shared by Antapaccay, Las Bambas and Hudbay Minerals’ (HBM) Constancia mine.
Demonstrations in recent months also have targeted Constancia and Antamina, Peru’s largest copper mine and co-owned by Glencore and BHP (BHP).
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Copper prices have been trading near all-time highs, with Goldman Sachs forecasting new records this summer.