Ban on open-pit mining stays: Palace

  • The ban on open pit mining stays despite the recommendation of the interagency Mining Industry Coordinating Council (MICC) to lift the ban, Malacañang said on 20 Nov 17.
  • “I verified this personally with the President, he says that the ban on new open pit mining remains,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque said in a press briefing.
  • Former environment secretary Gina Lopez ordered the ban on open pit mining in Apr 17, saying tailings spills tied to the technique caused most of the mining disasters in the country.
  • Lopez, whose appointment was blocked by mining firms and subsequently rejected by the Commission on Appointments, also called open pit mining “a financial liability to government for life.”
  • In Oct 17, the MICC recommended the lifting of the ban on open pit mining provided that mining laws, rules and regulations are strictly enforced.” The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines has welcomed the MICC recommendation, saying it would improve the investment climate of mining in the country.
  • During his second State of the Nation Address, Duterte warned mining companies that he would tax them “to death” if they do not rehabilitate the areas damaged by their operations.

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