Expansion of Toromocho Postponed3 August 2015
The metallurgical problems that Chinalco faces at Toromocho are coming to an end. The Chinese mining company announced a few days ago that it had reached full production capacity, but the delay of almost 20 months in getting there (the mine was inaugurated in December 2013) has forced it to suspend indefinitely its operation growth project, in which it was going to invest U$1.32Bn.
"The company is losing money. Because of that, it hasn't given us a date for the expansion project", said the Vice Minister of Mines, Guillermo Shinno. The Toromocho expansion project was due to begin its construction in January 2016, according to the chronogram of the Ministry of Energy and Mines (Minem).
The high concentrations of arsenic in the deposit (a penalty mineral for copper refineries) has been the main obstacle for the Chinese mining company. "Chinalco made a bad plan. Its engineers thought that coper mineral with lower levels of arsenic wasn't far from the surface, but in fact it was much lower down", explained the Vice Minister.