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8/27/14

The Rio Blanco copper lobbying in Peru

Here's a good one. The Chinese company behind Rio Blanco is trying to get the project moving forward again, with the usual hilarious corporate strategies and predictable results. They've hired this Chinese woman who got the job because she's guaranteed the company that she'll get the mine into operation in four years, even though she doesn't speak a scrap of Spanish. She's going about it by lobbying (translation: bribing) the rich and powerful in Lima's mining community and media channels, which means we've already seen supremely stupid and biased new reports on the national TV channels and efforts by the mining minstry to prime public opinion for the big PR push to come. 

Thing is, Rio Blanco is also trying to keep things very secret from the people who really matter, the locals around the Rio Blanco/Majaz project who've been vehemently opposed to the development of the mine for many years. This is stupid, because they've just found out Rio Blanco has been taking secret surveys of local opinion behind their backs and are now even more pissed than they were before (and that was very, but very pissed indeed, as IKN's previous coverage on the way the company kidnappped locals, shot at least one dead, got thrown off the property and ended up being successfully sued for its bullying shows).

So to sum up: A Chinese mining company being run by an new, arrogant and zero-idea-of-anything boss that's trying to push through one of the most hated mining projects in South America by pitting locals against a national press and government lobby through payoffs and slush funding. This one's going to end well, no'