Philippines plans to tighten mining rules

13 February 2012 (Last Updated February 13th, 2012 18:30)

The Philippine government is planning to introduce new measures to tighten mining rules to cut tax breaks and review resource contracts under a new policy.

The Philippine government is planning to introduce new measures to tighten mining rules to cut tax breaks and review resource contracts under a new policy.

The policy is expected to boost state revenue from mining and limit the industry's impact on the environment.

Philippine president Benigno Aquino plans to introduce competitive bidding for mining rights, widen a ban on mining to more areas and demand economic valuations before allowing projects.

According to Bloomberg News the draft executive order has been sent to various ministries for feedback.

Philippine finance secretary, Cesar Purisima, said in an interview with the news site that mining must be done in a manner that doesn't destroy the environment and in a way that benefits are properly shared between the companies and the country.

The Philippines will be one of 11 other countries which declared plans to increase taxes or royalties on sales of resources such as gold and coal in 2011.

The new policy is expected to affect companies including Xstrata, whose stalled $5.9bn project would be the country's biggest foreign investment.

The guidelines will also affect Australian gold producer OceanaGold Corp that is developing the $185m Didipio mine in Luzon in the northern Philippines.

The proposals call for a review of all existing mining contracts to ensure that they are in line with the new policies.