The open-pit mine is expected to produce a quarter of a million tons of copper a year and is one of five major Chinese mining projects planned for Peru that appear to be advancing despite the darkening economic climate. The reason? The Asian giant’s insatiable need for raw materials.
Erica S. Downs, a China expert at the Brookings Institution in Washington, said Chinese mining companies are aggressively expanding worldwide, often through mergers and acquisitions that target companies that have been laid low by the crisis. An example is Chinalco’s bid to acquire control of Rio Tinto, a giant Australian-British mining company.
“When the economy was booming, there were fewer attractive assets for sale, and often stiff competition for those that were available,” Downs said. “Today, Chinese firms are finding the opportunities for international mergers and acquisitions to be much more plentiful.”
Meanwhile, Reuters reports that a Peruvian investigation has found police officers guilty of torturing opponents of a mining project run by a British-Chinese company.