Investment of Foreign Companies in Chile

June 25, 2021
Paulina Gallego

Paulina Gallego

I am a Mining and Metallurgy Engineer from the National University of Colombia. I work at Promine as a Technical Support Specialist, supporting our clients, performing training, webinars, and more. As a woman belonging to the mining industry, I am an advocate of the role we represent, as well as how highly qualified we are to be part of the mining sector alongside the male gender. In my free time, I thoroughly enjoy reading science fiction books, as well as watching movies or series of the same genre. I believe strongly in sustainable mining development, that is why my greatest desire is to be part of its development generating change, in order to show the world that responsible mining is possible.

The mining sector in Chile represents one of the main activities for the development of the country’s economy, therefore it contributes to 10% of the country’s GDP, approximately $283 billion for the year 2019. On the other hand, close to half of the country’s total exports correspond to the mining sector, in fact, historically Chile is known as one of the most mineral-abundant countries in the world and is one of the most prosperous and economically stable countries in Latin America. (“Opportunities for Service Companies in Chile’s Copper Sector”, 2021) 

Copper is one of the most used metals worldwide and Chile is the number one producer in the world, covering almost 27.9% of production. This, along with the high copper demand that has been emerging over the last few years, makes Chile one of the most attractive investment destinations for foreign companies. Currently, two major U.S. mining companies are present in the Chilean market: Freeport McMoran Copper & Gold Inc. and Albemarle Corporation.  In addition, most of the foreign mining companies continue to be Canadian, Australian, European, and Asian owned as Glencore, Rio Tinto, and BHP. (“Chile – Country Commercial Guide”, 2021) 

Thus, it is to be expected that the mining sector in Chile will reach a high investment rate by more foreign companies in the coming years. However, as we know, the quality of the products and the risk minimization of investment play a fundamental role in achieving this goal. Therefore, we cannot speak of a Chilean mining future without taking into account the role of new technologies and the digital revolution that drives development, helps the environment, and upgrades productivity by increasing profits. Different technological tools such as design software become great partners for development since together with other digitalization strategies such as artificial intelligence, companies can automate most of the processes and get the best results in mining operations.   

 

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