The government is pursuing solutions for legal problems tying down idle mining interests held by the state to speed up the privatization of these assets and revive their operations.
Lawsuits filed by the private sector proponents in the operations of these once-flourishing mining assets have hampered efforts by the government to privatize them, according to the Privatization and Management Office (PMO),
“We are forming an interagency team to study ways on how we can clear the path for these assets to be privatized and revive their operations,” Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said.
Dominguez said the team will be composed of representatives from the DOF, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), the DOF-attached Privatization and Management Office (PMO), and the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG).
A memorandum by the PMO to Dominguez identified the copper-gold project of the Maricalum Mining Corp. (Maricalum Mining) in Negros Occidental, the nickel mines of the Nonoc Mining and Industrial Corp. (Nonoc Mining) in Surigao del Norte, and the gold- and copper-rich North Davao Mining Property (North Davao Mining) in Davao del Norte as among the idle mining assets held by the government that have long been under litigation.
The PMO also said the copper mines of the Basay Mining Corporation (Basay Mining) in Negros Oriental and the nickel mine once operated by the Marinduque Mining and Industrial Corp. (MMIC Bagacay Mine) in Western Samar have also remained non-operational because of legal concerns on how these assets should be disposed of.