Site Meter
Send Us An Email
Panama Guide

Welcome to Panama Guide
Wednesday, September 26 2018 @ 11:36 AM UTC

View Printable Version

Protesters Close Road To Petaquilla Gold Mine

Gold & MiningA group of Indians on Thursday closed the main access route to the Petaquilla mining project, located in the Donoso district, Colón province, to support the fight of their partners from the Ngäbe Bugle comarca, who have kept the Inter American Highway closed at San Felix and Vigui, in protest against mining exploration in the country. These indigenous residents from the areas surrounding the Petaquilla mine have stated this is an indefinite closure, so they will not allow the passage of trucks and machinery to the extraction area. "We want to invite our comrades to collaborate, together we can, Petaquilla is going to destroy the eight rivers. We will defend our natural resources and the indigenous who live in the country," said one of the leaders. (Telemetro)

Editor's Comment: And, there you have it. This "protest" is anti-mining, anti hydroelectric projects, and is being driven by environmentalists and political operatives from the PRD and Panameñista political parties, in order to create headaches for Ricardo Martinelli. These "protesters" are enough to close a road, but they do not represent the majority of the groups they claim to represent. This is a politically motivated show. In their most recent financial statement (Nov 2011) Petaquilla lists "Royalties Payable" of more than $8.9 million dollars. Meaning, since they started extraction and gold production operations they have already paid or will have to pay $8.9 million dollars to the government of Panama. This is a direct compensation to the country, generated by the ounces of gold extracted and sold. However there are also tremendous direct and indirect economic benefits - for example they spent more than $10 million dollars in "production costs" in just three months. That money remains here in Panama, paid in the form of services, payroll, logistics, expendables, fuel, etc. So great. A handful of paid political protesters and environmental extremists who want to shut down all mining in Panama are having their way with the country. I hope they are having fun, because the math sucks.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

The Famous "Article 5" Is Complete And Utter Bullshit - Protest Is A Politically Motivated Farce

Gold & MiningThe chairman of the Committee of Economic and Commercial Affairs of the National Assembly, Deputy Raul Hernandez, said they have "fully" met the requests made by both the indigenous Indians from the Ngöge-Buglé comarca and environmentalists who are demanding the reinstatement of Article 5 into Bill Number 415. He said the request being made by the Coordinator for the Defense of Natural Resources and the Rights of the Ngäbe-Bugle People is already contained in Article 3 and Article 8, as agreed to and signed by the participants in the coordination meetings weeks ago, which says "It is prohibited to grant concessions for the exploration, exploitation and extraction of metallic and nonmetallic mining."

The Article the demonstrators from the Ngäbe-Bugle region are asking to be reinstated to Bill Number 415 (Article 5) says "All of the existing concessions granted to domestic or foreign companies for the exploitation of mineral resources and the construction of hydroelectric projects in the Ngäbe-Bugle region, surrounding areas, territories, and communities outside the area are cancelled, and the work being done by all of these companies is suspended."

Hernandez spoke about the protesters who are blocking the Inter American Highway in San Felix and other parts in the Western area of the country on the channel 13 Telemetro morning news broadcast, saying they cannot advocate for the rights because they are not the (true) representatives of the Ngöge-Buglé region. Hernandez said he thinks political operatives from the opposition political parties might have infiltrated into the ranks of the protesters. "It's sad to see how they are using our Ngöbe brothers," said the deputy. (Panama America)

National Assembly Deputy Raúl Hernández

Editor's Comment: Ah ha! So THAT'S why we have not heard until now the contents of this famous "Article 5" - it's complete and utter bullshit. If you read it carefully, if those words were included in Bill 415 and passed as law, then all mining operations in the entire country would immediately become illegal. All hydroelectric plants in the entire country would immediately become illegal. All currently operating mines and hydroelectric plants would have to be shut down instantly and all concessions cancelled. And all construction on these types of activities for newly granted concessions would be immediately suspended. Of course that's not going to happen. This is why yesterday several government ministers said the protesting Indians are being "coached" by political operatives from the opposition PRD and/or Panameñista political parties to demand things that they know the government is never going to grant. And the protesting Indians are not even sitting down at any kind of a negotiation table to talk with the government - they are just blocking the roadway and waiting for the riot police to fire tear gas, so they can claim they have been "repressed." And what's more, these are not even the legitimate representatives of the Ngöge-Buglé people. This is a show. A politically motivated circus. What crap...

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Economic Damages Of Road Closures in San Felix (Mining Protest)

Gold & Mining The economic losses stemming from the 21 consecutive hours that the Inter American Highway has been closed due to protests has been quantified at more than $1.5 million dollars. Hundreds of protesting Indians have closed the road at the San Felix intersection. This was announced by Manuel Mora, the President of the National Chamber of Cargo Transportation (Canatraca), who said the greatest losses have been recorded in both domestic and international loads, primarily those which are transported from the province of Chiriqui to the regions of Panama City and Colon. "The deterioration of vegetables, milk and a variety of poultry products has reflected substantial losses," said Mora. As for the loads of cargo that come from Central America to Panama, the President of the Canatraca said these transactions have also been greatly affected, because such goods are moved only on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

MEASURES - So far the carriers have decided to approach the Land Transit and Transportation Authority (ATTT), to ask them to monitor everything that is happening on the Inter American Highway. "We call attention to the authorities so they can see the seriousness of the problem, for them to report on the situation," he added. The Indigenous people are calling a for a dialogue with the Government on the mining bill that is being discussed in the National Assembly. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: The actual economic damages are way, way more than $1.5 million dollars. That's just what the transportation sector can put their finger on. It's much higher when you consider that this protest has basically cut the country in half, and no one can get from there to here and back again. Lost time, fuel, etc.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Ngäbe Buglé Indians Close A Lane Of The Inter American Highway

Gold & MiningA group of Indians from the Ngäbe Buglé comarca have closed one of the lanes of the Inter American highway at San Félix in Chiriqui. Meanwhile a commission from the government headed by the Minister of Government Jorge Ricardo Fabrega and National Assembly Deputy Fernando Carrillo arrived at the governor's office. Their initial proposal was for the Indians to come to the governor's office, but they refused. The group is protesting and demanding the removal of Article 5 from Bill 415, which establishes a special regime for the protection of mineral resources, water and the environment in the Ngäbe Buglé comarca. (Estrella)

Editor's Comment: They are worried that the law as it is written now would allow for mining to be conducted at Cerro Colorado - this protest is not about the Inmet copper project.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Ngäbe-Bugle Protest Elimination of Article 5 From Consensus Mining Bill

Gold & Mining San Felix, Chiriqui - Ngäbe-Bugles from different communities in the region have traveled to the district of San Felix, Chiriqui Province, to join the call made by the Coalition for the Defense and People's Rights Ngäbe-Bugle to protest the elimination of Article No. 5 from the bill to regulate mining activity in the country. Rogelio Montezuma, a spokesman for the Coalition for the Defense and People's Rights Ngäbe-Bugle, said they are willing to maintain a "common resistance" at the intersection of San Felix to demand the reincorporation of Article No.5. Another group of indigenous people are also at the crossroads of Boca Del Monte and Vigui "because this is the future of the comarca because mining will destroy the natural resources of that region," said Montezuma.

CLOSING - Earlier riot police from the National Police were waiting at the intersection of San Felix in San Lorenzo and Vigui to prevent the closure of the Inter American Highway. The Deputies who are members of the Trade Commission of the National Assembly approved on January 25, unanimously and in the first debate, Bill No.415, which established a special regime for the mineral resources, water and environmental issues in the Ngäbe-Bugle region. Bill Number 415 consists of nine articles and was approved by the Deputies who are members of the Committee on Commerce, after several months of meetings with the Indians in an ad hoc committee. Therefore, the Buglé Ngäbe do not understand why Article 5 was removed from the consensus bill.

At 1:45 pm this afternoon the Indians began to march from the Plaza in San Felix to the intersection of San Felix and Las Lajas, where there is already a large number of riot police deployed. The Indians also are located in the areas of ​​Horconcito and Vigui. The group shouts slogans against the government and the approval of the bill without the article agreed between Deputies and the indigenous peoples. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: OK. What was in Article 5? Why was it eliminated?

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Ngäbe-Buglé Indians Trying To Decide Whether To Protest, Or Not

Gold & Mining San Felix, Chiriqui - Riot control officers of the National Police are waiting at the intersection of San Felix, in San Lorenzo and Vigui to prevent the closure of the Inter American highway by the indigenous peoples of the Coalition for the Defense of People's Rights Ngäbe-Bugle, who announced protests over the removal of an article from the bill that regulates mining in the country. Meanwhile, in the Plaza of San Felix, the indigenous Indians are organizing to make their demonstrations, over the way in which Bill No. 415 was presented to the full National Assembly. The Commerce Commission of the National Assembly approved on January 25, unanimously and in the first debate, Bill No.415, which established a special regime of mineral resources, water and environment in the Ngäbe-Bugle comarca. The bill consists of nine items and was approved by the Deputies who are the members of the Committee on Commerce, after several months of meetings with the Indians in an ad hoc committee. So now the Indians do not understand why the article was removed from the consensus bill. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: Obvious question - what did the article that was removed from the bill say?

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

More Info About Rosie Simms And Anti Mining Articles (Reader Feedback)

Gold & MiningBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Received this morning via email: "Hi Don, I hope all is well in your neck of the woods and I truly congratulate you for the Panama Guide. When Panama has faced developmental dilemmas that pit conflicting value systems, your viewpoint stands apart as a truly balanced and reflexive analytical source. Kudos for that!

On the Rosie Simms situation, I'd just like to provide a further piece of information that i find curious. Here’s a video of Simms saying she “never attended any protests” and does not know why she was not allowed in country. Yet there's another article entitled “Panama Government wants no witnesses” with a picture of an indigenous demonstration and the tagline says “Foto tomada por Simms durante las protestas antimineras en 2011” (Photo taken by Simms during the anti mining protests in 2011.) … interesting how she could get that picture without being at the protest – if she’s legitimately doing journalistic work, even as a student, there would be no need to lie about her attendance. Food for thought...

I hope we get a chance to catch up soon and perhaps we can provide a briefing on our project status. all the best, MM."

Editor's Comment: Yeah, I saw the video and read the articles. As far as I'm concerned there's no mystery here. Simms is obviously an environmental activist who also dabbles in the rights of indigenous peoples, posing as a journalist. She co-wrote a couple of articles about these issues when she was here in Panama in early 2011 during the anti mining protests against Law 8. To me it's blazingly obvious the government of Panama simply decided to prevent her from entering Panama this time around. And you're right, how can Simms say she was not at any of the anti mining protests, but this statement is contradicted by the content of her own articles which clearly indicate she was there, and the publication of photos she took at those protests.

What I Think About All Of This: First of all on the issue of censorship, banning or deporting journalists, or trying to control the media. I think it's wrong. It never works. It never has worked. And, as in the case of Rosie Simms, now everyone is talking about how ham-fisted the government of Ricardo Martinelli is in dealing with the press and journalists who are not in his favor, and it makes their administration look like they are inept, unsure, insecure, bumbling amateurs. Any effort to open a new and massive open pit copper mine is guaranteed to meet with resistance from the environmentalists and other indigenous rights activists. Anyone in the government should know it's going to happen, and they should have developed a plan and method for dealing with that. But banning journalists is not going to work. Now every backpack toting "Occupy Panama" tree hugging extremist within flying distance will be coming down, "under cover", with a mission of trying to become more famous than Rosie Simms. So, her case will be cited forever by organizations such as Reporters Without Boarders as an example of how the current government of Panama is violating the basic tenants of freedom of the press. Because, they are. And what's worse, that will turn Simms into a sort of international journalistic freedom of speech martyr, with the government of Panama on the wrong side of the equation. So, tossing Simms was dumb on several fronts and for several reasons. If the copper mine is a good thing for Panama, then explain that. If the indigenous peoples have a legitimate gripe or beef, then address those issues (and buy them out.) There's nothing environmentally friendly or pretty about an open pit copper mine. But if the long term benefits outweigh the potential downside, and the executive decision has been made to proceed, then deal with the fallout of that decision, in a sane, logical, coherent, and responsible manner.

Dealing With International Rabble Rousers: Martinelli has demonstrated time and time again he simply does not care about the potential for negative fallout, and he would simply eject international journalists who disagree with him and his policies. But wait a minute, I'm still sitting right here, and I disagree with Martinelli all the time. So, what's the difference? I don't go out and participate in anti government protests. I do my best to present both sides of any controversial issue. I separate my own personal thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and bias from the content of the articles I write, and present those ideas as my own. I don't try to make anyone else (readers) share my own personal thoughts and beliefs. I write to inform, not to convince. And, I believe my readers are intelligent adults who are capable of making their own decisions about any issue. I trust them. In regards to this mining issue, there's big money involved - billions and billions of dollars for the government of Panama over the 30 some year lifespan of the production of the mine. The government of Panama could easily say "we will give the Indigenous peoples one billion dollars to shut up and go away. If you take the money then no more protests. If you have any more protests or block the road, then we cut off the money. Deal?" But they might not do that, or decide to do something else, or nothing at all. And there's the point. The government is going to do whatever it decides. The indigenous people and environmental activists will do whatever they are going to do. And I'm going to simply report on the story. I don't even have a vote in this country, and neither do the vast majority of the people who read this website. I follow, I report, and you can decide. But I'm no threat whatsoever to the government of Panama. I just watch what they do and report. Because that's my job. The news is not supposed to be about the journalist - and when that happens then something is wrong. And in my personal experience, when it happens - as in this Rosie Simms case - then normally it's because the journalist wasn't doing a proper job, as a journalist. If Rosie Simms had gone out of her way to get a quote from a couple of government sources, or if she had clearly presented a fair and balanced report, then she probably would not have gotten bounced. But, she's highly biased. And therefore, she got PNG'd. Simple as that.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Panama Expels Canadian Political Activist and Journalist Rosie Simms

Gold & MiningA new group of journalists from the television company Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) will come to Panama next Monday with the intention of carrying out journalistic work on mining. The arrival of the new CBC team will come almost a week after Immigration authorities prevented Rosie Simms, a reporter from that company, from entering the country on Friday, 20 January 2012. Previously, Simms was in Panama journalist and wrote stories about Ngäbe-Bugle people and their struggle against the mining projects.

This time, El Siglo learned that CBC will send another group of journalists to Panama, but without saying how many it would be. The National Immigration Service, an institution that maintains the data and information on the entry and exit of foreign nationals, said they do not know if there was any standing impediment to entry against the journalist Simms.

Government spokesman Luis Camacho said he does not know what happened to the Canadian journalist, or if there is any impediment that would prevent her from entering Panama. In any case, he said, he would correspond with the National Immigration Service to define if there is any action against the journalist.

The Secretary General of the Union of Journalists of Panama, Filemón Medina, expressed concern over this situation and he regretted that a democratic country can prevent the entry of journalists doing research. According to Medina, the Panamanian government will not find, at the end of the tunnel, a light that provides guidance on their relationship with the news media.

This is not the first time a foreign journalist has been prevented from entering Panama, because on 28 February 2011 the Spanish journalist Francisco Gómez Nadal was deported to his country. Nadal worked at the newspaper La Prensa and in his writings he had spoken in defense of the indigenous peoples' struggle against the mining projects. (Siglo)

Editor's Comment: And, there’s the answer. Rosie Simms was in Panama in early 2011 working as a journalist and political activist. When I first started investigating this issue, I heard she was a "fixer" - someone who does the initial legwork for a news organization. It simply didn't make any sense for the government of Panama to bar entry to a low level, relatively young, and inexperienced fixer. None. So, I started checking into it. I contacted Lynn Burgess, a producer for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. I explicitly asked Mrs. Burgess if Rosie Simms had any experience working as a journalist in Panama, if she had ever been to Panama, or if she had ever done anything while here that might have prompted the government to take this action against her. Lynn Burgess went out of her way to describe Rosie Simms as a young, inexperienced, and harmless college student, saying "she says 'gosh' and 'golly' for example." Lynn Burgess said she had no idea why the government of Panama would want to keep her out of the country, and suspected it might have something to do with their intent to do a story about Canadian companies and mining in Panama. Well, Lynn Burgess was right.

Highly Biased Reporting On Mining in Panama: Rosie Simms wrote and published a series of articles about mining in Panama and the participation of Canadian companies in those operations. Every one of her reports are written staunchly from the side of the protesting Ngöbé-Buglé indigenous peoples of Panama, highly biased against the mining projects being promoted by the government of Panama and president Ricardo Martinelli. She is NOT "just a fixer" but rather much more of a political activist playing the role of investigative journalist. Simms co-wrote and published an article in “The Dominion” on 4 May 2011 with the title “Ngobe Protest Prevails.” You can read the article for yourself at this link: http://www.dominionpaper.ca/articles/3968.

At the end of the article, in the section describing the authors, it states “Dana Holtby and Rosie Simms are Montreal-based students and environmental organizers with a focus on water justice and Indigenous rights. They are currently travelling throughout Panama on a four-month field study semester.”

About The Dominion: In the “About Us” section of their website, they write:

  • “Is the Dominion biased?

  • We believe all media are biased. Every time a reporter chooses a story, chooses who to interview, chooses what questions to ask, he or she is revealing a bias. Much of the coverage in the mainstream press is biased towards the rich and the powerful. For example, articles in the business section of the Globe and Mail focus on how rich people are making more money and rarely cover the impacts corporations are having on labour rights, the environment, social inequality, First Nations land rights, etc.

  • Where mainstream media makes false claims of 'balanced' and 'unbiased' coverage, the Dominion is explicit about its bias: we are biased towards the perspectives of those most affected by events, government policy and corporate activity.”

So, Rosie Simms was apparently prevented from entering Panama because of this article. And that's not the only one. On 11 March 2011 another article was published by this same pair, The Consequences of Copper. Again, this article was highly biased against the copper mining project in Panama, and was literally written from the inside of the indigenous protests against Law 8. Simms also co-wrote and published In The Belly Of The Machine. Finally, they posed another report with an audio file here, under Ngöbé-Buglé unite against Panamanian mining code changes.

Bottom Line: I hope Rosie Simms enjoyed her time in Panama, because she's probably not going to be let back in until the SUNTRACS candidate gets elected as the new president in 2098. This Inmet copper mine deal is a multi-billion dollar project. The numbers are massive - way to big for the government to give a single rat's ass about Rosie Simms or her world view about the impact of copper mining on the indigenous people of Panama. You might agree or disagree with the government's position on mining, freedom of the press, or the treatment of international journalists - but that's why she got thrown out of Panama. And apparently, Lynn Burgess at the CBC either didn't know about these articles, or she "neglected" to tell me about them when we spoke. Anyway, no matter. There's no mystery here anymore. Done. Next.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Local Residents Surprised By Mining Sign

Gold & MiningThe tranquility of the residents of Llano Sanchez, in the district of El Roble de Aguadulce, was interrupted eight days ago, after the company Minera Panama SA installed a sign at the entrance to the community that reports on a metallic mining project. The sign also says the project will take place in an area of ​​5,900 hectares and its environmental impact study, grade III, has been approved by the National Environmental Authority (ANAM). Elabeth Espinosa, resident in the community, said this situation has caused alarm in the area, because the community has not received any explanation about the project. For his part, Felix Ortega, one of the residents of Llano Sanchez, said the biggest concern for those living there are the negative effects the activity may cause. "If the project is already approved, we can not do anything, but we want the company to explain to us what the benefits this will bring to the community," he added.

Paul Bouche, an officer of the Department of Community Response for Minera Panama SA, said the company's presence in the community is not for the mining project, but a power transmission line will pass through the area from the substation located at Llano Sanchez to the Panama Copper Project in Donoso, Colon province. The regional director of the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MITI) of Cocle, Gustavo Ortega, confirmed what the company said about the power transmission line, and he said any private farm owners affected by the installation of the towers for the power transmission line will be compensated by the mining company. (Mi Diario)

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Inmet Mining Announces KPMC Decision to Exercise Cobre Panama Option

Gold & Mining(Press Release) TORONTO, CANADA -- Inmet Mining Corporation announced today it has received notice from Korea Panama Mining Corporation (KPMC) that KPMC has elected, under its Option Agreement, to acquire a 20% interest in the Cobre Panama development project, leaving Inmet with an 80% interest. As described in our press release dated January 3, 2012, KPMC is a joint venture between LS-Nikko Copper Inc. (LS-Nikko) and Korean Resources Corporation (KORES). The Option Agreement was announced October 28, 2009, and enables KPMC to acquire a 20% interest in the project for investment of approximately US $155 million, representing KPMC's share of historical development costs incurred to the date of the Option Agreement and their proportionate share of development costs incurred above a cap of $150 million. This transaction is subject to customary conditions and is expected to close by the end of February 2012. After closing, KPMC will continue to fund its 20% of development costs, and Minera Panama SA (MPSA), the owner of the Cobre Panama project, and KPMC will enter into an off-take purchase agreement, enabling KPMC to purchase a 20% share of MPSA's concentrates production on arm's length market terms, subject to KPMC arranging for related financing.

Editor's Comment: Expect a huge fight from the environmentalists in Panama as this project moves forward. The project obviously has the support of the government of Panama, there's no doubt about that. However Martinelli's political opponents have demonstrated their ability and willingness to control and manipulate the poor in Panama, to get them to protest against the government's plans. Anyway, this won't be smooth sailing - batten down the hatches, we're in for a blow...

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Consortium to develop Panama copper mine

Gold & MiningA South Korean consortium led by state-run Korea Resources Corp. said it will begin development of a Panama copper mine in the first half of this year. The announcement comes after Panama’s environmental protection agency approved development plans for the Cobre Panama mines, in Colon Province 120 kilometers west of Panama City, KORES said in a press release last week. It said the approved environment and social impact assessment comprehensively authorizes the building of roads, ports and a coal-fired thermal power plant. Such infrastructures are vital for the development of the mine, which may yield more than 2.14 billion tons of copper and molybdenum. “Infrastructure building will take about four years with 1 million tons of copper concentrates to be mined every year from 2016 onwards,” the corporation said. The corporation and LS-Nikko Copper Inc., a South Korean copper smelter and refiner, currently own a combined 20 percent stake in the mine that they can operate for 30 years. (Yonhap News)

Editor's Comment: Hoo boy. The environmentalists in Panama are up in arms over this deal. And, there's an issue with the constitution. Article 3, Paragraph 2 of the Panamanian Constitution reads: "The national territory shall never be ceded, transferred or disposed of, either temporarily or partially, to other States." The company Korea Resources Corp is run by the Government of Korea, and they have been granted a 20% stake in this deal. I can predict there will be court challenges. The bottom line is that the government of Panama really wants to make this copper deal happen, because it's a great deal economically speaking for the country. And, this Korea Resources Corp will only have a 20% stake in the deal, so the Supreme Court of Panama (currently controlled by appointees named by president Ricardo Martinelli) will have to decide if a 20% stake in this mine is the same thing as ceding or transferring the national territory to another state. I suspect the Supreme Court will listen to all of the arguments and then decide in favor of the money, business, and jobs, and against the environmentalists. But, that's just me making predictions, for what it's worth. There's a whole lot of copper up there in them there hills. And I mean, a lot. This could end up being one of the largest copper mines in the world. Thousands of jobs, lots of money. It will be ugly, because all copper mines are ugly. But it doesn't necessarily have to be an environmental nightmare if it's done right and in a responsible manner. Don't like copper mines? Then turn off your lights, your computer, your air conditioner, sell your car, etc.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Cobre Panama Receives Approval of the Environmental & Social Impact Assessment from the Government of Panama

Gold & Mining(Press Release) TORONTO, Canada: Inmet Mining Corporation (Inmet) is pleased to report that the Government of Panama, through the Autoridad Nacional del Ambiente (ANAM), approved on December 28, 2011 the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) required for development of the Cobre Panama copper project, including the mining operations and related infrastructure, a port facility, and a coal-fired power plant.

With the announcement of the approval by ANAM of the project ESIA, Korea Panama Mining Corp. (KPMC), a joint venture between Korea Resources Corporation and LS-Nikko Copper Inc., has until January 10, 2012 to notify Inmet as to its election to acquire a 20% interest in the project. If KPMC exercises its option, we would anticipate closing to occur no later than 30 business days after the date of KPMC’s exercise of the option, and at closing, KPMC would be required to invest approximately $155 million in MPSA in accordance with the option.

Editor's Comment: Interesting. The government of Panama regularly does things during the holidays that it expects might cause problems or a reaction among the people. As long time readers already know, I'm generally in favor of the development of the mining industry in Panama as long as it's done in an environmentally responsible manner. Copper mines tend to be surface "ugly" because there simply is no way to do a "pretty" strip mine in an area that used to be covered with pristine jungle canopy. However - the copper is not resting on the surface where you can just go pick it up. You have to dig it out of the ground. And this copper project is huge. Massive. The deposits are estimated to be some of the largest in the world - if not "the" largest in the world. Copper prices have been steadily rising. This project will generate hundreds if not thousands of new jobs in Panama. The money invested by the developers of the mine will be spent right here in Panama, so every dime of that money will be plowed right back into the local economy. The mine will be located in an area where there practically is no other economic activity - so the local residents can count on good paying jobs and work, literally for generations. Without a doubt their living conditions and standards of living will improve dramatically. The government of Panama will receive taxes and revenues and dividends from every pound of copper sold - creating new money that can be used for social programs, roads, schools, health clinics, or what have you. And the numbers are not in the hundreds of millions but rather in the tens of billions. Once the copper has been removed you can plow the dirt back in, plant some trees, and the jungle will grow right back in less than ten years. Yeah - I'm very much "pro mining" for Panama. The environmentalists who rally against this are generally already employed and well fed. They spend most of their time pecking away on a computer in an air conditioned room. They scream and bitch and complain about the potential for environmental damage, completely ignoring the way the people in the area who would most benefit from these jobs are living right now. Anyway, expect this whole mining debate to turn back on as a result of this press release.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

"Why Isn't Petaquilla Stock Kicking Ass?"

Gold & MiningBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Received today via email: "Don, I go to your website daily as I am heavily invested in Panama and look for news on your great site. I actually LIKE your commentary because it gives a blunt, straight from the gut impression of said event/issue. Thank you. I am an investor in Petaquilla but have been puzzled by its performance lately. Is there something I'm missing there...production up, profits up, gold price up...stock way down. Since you have been a supporter of the stock and are on the ground I thought you might know about issues that your readers don't. Clearly it is out of favor relative to other gold producers. I would think it being traded as a Canadian issue would help safeguard against the standard Panamanian corruption, foul play, etc. Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks, BK"

Editor's Comment: Well, I looked at the chart and it seems like the Petaquilla stock has been playing around the 80 cents per share level at least three times since May 2011. Honestly, I think investors are basically afraid of Richard Fifer. But you're right, on the fundamentals it should be doing better than it is. Disclaimer: I don't own any of the stock and they don't pay me a dime in any capacity whatsoever, so this is nothing more than my opinion as an analyst. The company is now making money and producing gold on a regular basis. I've always been "pro" Petaquilla because I think the mining industry in general should be exploited in Panama on the math and economics. And, I've been watching this company for years as they went through the process of exploration, getting permits, building their facilities, and now finally into production. In Petaquilla's most recent press release they report higher production, more profits, more efficient production, and increases in the value of the gold they are producing. So yeah, the stock should be kicking ass. Why isn't it? It seems to me that the stock has become a trader's darling, meaning they can make money on it as it goes up and down within a range - and the really serious investor money is staying away on the risks and fundamentals of "gold mine in Panama" and "Richard Fifer." My two bits, for what it's worth. What to do? Instead of buy and hold, work it as a trader's stock. Just look at the chart and you can see when it turns and practically predict the cycle. Buy low, short high. Best of luck.

Copyright 2011 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Ngäbe Buglé Indians Protesting Over Mining In Their Comarca

Gold & Mining#Panama - The indigenous people of the Ngäbe Buglé comarca completely blocked the Inter American Highway at the intersection of San Felix in the eastern part of the province of Chiriqui at about 3:39 pm this afternoon, but they have had one lane closed since 1:00 pm. At 4:11 in the afternoon the Minister of the Presidency Jimmy Papadimitriu, the Minister of Trade and Industry Ricardo Quijano, and the National Assembly Deputy who represents the area, Fernando Carrillo, all arrived in the province and went to the area of the protest. The protesters immediately opened the other lanes of the Inter American Highway, which they had blocked for about 20 minutes, and a table was set up on the side of the road for talks. However, they still have one lane of the road closed to keep up the pressure. They demand the elimination of the draft law to modify the mining code that removes protection from their resources, and the implementation of a special law to eliminate mining in the region. (Estrella)

Editor's Comment: Money. They will be paid off, and the protests will go away. Eventually.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
View Printable Version

Martinelli and Varela Visit Petaquilla Gold Mine

Gold & MiningVANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwire) Petaquilla Minerals Ltd. is pleased to announce that the President and Vice-President of Panama, Ricardo Martinelli and Juan Carlos Varela, visited the Company's Molejon gold mining project yesterday. During their visit to Petaquilla's mine site and tour of the Molejon gold plant, Messrs. Martinelli and Varela were able to observe the successful extraction of and production of gold. Since commercial gold production commenced, the Company has generated employment, greatly contributed to the development of Panama, particularly the mining industry, and has become the largest exporter in Panama.

Editor's Comment: What? Petaquilla is now claiming to be the "largest exporter in Panama"? OK you Petaquilla guys, please contact me. I want to know the details. I suspect you're talking in terms of the dollar value of the gold that's being produced, right? This could potentially be huge from an information management point of view. I would also like to see the numbers and the math - how much money has Petaquilla already paid to the government of Panama in terms of royalties or taxes (whatever it's called) for each ounce of gold produced? What is the true and accomplished production thus far, to date. What is the total projection for 2011? And (doing the math) how much money will the government of Panama expect to receive during 2011 as a result of that production - only talking about the money generated from the concession and taxes or royalties - not indirect which I understand is both significant and quite possibly more important. But from an information management point of view - this line of being the "largest exporter in Panama" is a potential game changer. Please call or write - 6614 0451 or don@panama-guide.com. Thanks.

Share
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks