First Quantum says negotiations restarted on future of Panama mine – Financial Post

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The Panama authorities had reduce off talks and ordered the mine closed earlier than restarting talks
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TORONTO — First Quantum Minerals Ltd. mentioned it’s again in discussions with the federal government of Panama over a advantages sharing settlement because it appears to keep away from a shutdown of its Cobre Panama mine.

Toronto-based First Quantum mentioned on Dec. 16 that the federal government had reduce off talks and ordered the mine closed, however now says discussions on growing payouts from the mine restarted on Monday.

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“We respect the Authorities of Panama’s constructive engagement this week,” mentioned chief government Tristan Pascall in a information launch Wednesday.

First Quantum mentioned that for now the mine is working as regular, however that it obtained formal notification on Dec. 21 that it must submit a plan inside 10 working days on the way it plans to wind down operations.

The corporate mentioned it continues to do the whole lot attainable to assist employees on the mine and to guard its funding, which totals greater than US$10 billion over greater than twenty years within the nation.

The advantages sharing settlement proposed by the corporate would supply for funds of US$375 million a yr in tax and royalty revenues, however First Quantum can be pushing to safe the appropriate to cut back the quantity if metallic costs or profitability drop considerably.

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The present contract, which the federal government is trying to renegotiate, was renewed in 2017 and runs till 2037, whereas the mine started producing copper in 2019.

First Quantum mentioned talks are ongoing and it stays dedicated to in search of a mutually helpful settlement as quickly as attainable, however that it has additionally began preliminary authorized actions together with potential worldwide arbitration below the Canada-Panama Free Commerce Settlement.

“The popular choice for each side is to realize a balanced settlement that may profit all events for a few years to come back,” mentioned Pascall.

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