Companies in the sector point to the favorable geological conditions for this activity in the country and advocate that the suspension of concessions which has been in effect since 2009 be lifted.
Companies engaged in exploration and mining activities support their argument citing the new ways in which the activity now takes place, differentiating the artisanal mining techniques which were used in the past from those used in modern mining.
On August 16 and 17 industry representatives from around the globe will be taking part in business conferences and lectures on the role of mineral resources and the impact of the activity on the economy.
The II International Mining Congress is being organized by the Mining Chamber of Nicaragua and will be held on August 16 and 17 in Managua.
The mining union is complaining about lack of controls on growing illegal mining activities, driven by the need to avoid torturous bureaucratic formalities.
The main problem denounced by formal mining companies is the effect that the illegal activity has on prices, since illegally mined products sell at lower prices, preventing the formal sector from competing on equal terms.
Conflicts over environmental protection and excessive bureaucracy in the process of granting concessions are the factors that limit the great mining potential in the region.
The mining sector in Central America represents great potential for investment and business, however, it has so far contributed only 0.75% to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), averaged from the six countries in the region, between 2008 and 2012. Costa Rica reported the lowest activity with 0.1% and Panama the highest with 1.7% of GDP.
In the last six years capacity mining production in the country has tripled and it is expected to increase even more with the startup of two new projects.
According to Denis Lanzas Cisneros, vice president of the Chamber of Mines of Nicaragua, one of the main reasons behind the growth of the sector in recent years is the regulatory framework which established the Mining Act, which "... 'has created investor confidence in developing technology, and that has allowed us to increase our production capacity, improve our quality to get better returns from the waste materials we get from mining. That led, in 2013, to us becoming the chief exporter (country) with 442.6 million dollars which represented 18.44 percent of Nicaragua's total exports.'"
The study notes that in ten years the contribution of mining to the economy was only 1.25% of GDP.
From a press release issued by the Central Institute for Fiscal Studies (Icefi):
The study entitled "Assessment of the mining situation in Honduras 2007-2012" highlights the controversial nature of mining in Honduras, which generally comes from: a) conflicts between mining companies and communities; b) low levels of contribution to national and municipal taxes; c) environmental problems; d) human rights violations; d) weak legal framework and one which is favorable to mining companies; e) weakness state institutions which regulate mining activities.
A study reveals the state's inability to meet the demands for services and road infrastructure that arise when a mining project is set up.
"Mining in Guatemala's economy in 2011 accounted for 2.8% of the production of goods and services nationwide .... By 2012, the total tax contribution of the mining sector was $62,496,766 equivalent to 5.7% of production of mining and quarrying," indicated the Central American Institute for Fiscal Studies (ICEFI).
Modifications made to the law after its approval in early 2013 could discourage investments for this year.
The conditions that the industry expected this year are different to those of 2013, as international prices of precious metals have dropped and the changes made to the law passed in early 2013 could discourage foreign investment planned for this year.
Laprensa.hn reports: "The long wait for the country to have a mining law that is in line with the current situation has had an impact on the arrival of new investments, all of which are dependent upon the results of the November general election to define their situation ".
Armstrong Equipment, Inc. is an American based company that specializes in the distribution to Latin America of equipment and parts used in the mining sector, rock crushing and asphalt paving.
Operates in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama
Phone: (305) 592 8361
Constructora Celaque is a leader when it comes to construction of civil projects and mining in Honduras with more than 15 years of experience.
Operates in Honduras and Honduras
Phone: (504) 2239 6794 - (504) 9905 7845