Philippines stops mining operations in Marcventures at Surigao del Sur

27 April 2014 (Last Updated April 27th, 2014 18:30)

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), a Filipino Government agency under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), has stopped mining operations at Marcventures Mining and Development in Surigao del Sur for violation of industrial laws.

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), a Filipino Government agency under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), has stopped mining operations at Marcventures Mining and Development in Surigao del Sur for violation of industrial laws.

In 2010, MGB granted permission to Marcventures to mine nickel at a 300ha in Cantillan.

However, an investigation carried out by DENR found that the company was extracting nickel outside its approved territory in Carascal town.

Investigators expected the company could have taken such a step because indigenous peoples were not allowing them to carry out mining in Cantillan.

The investigation was carried out following complaints received by MGB about alleged illegal operations.

MGB director Leo Jasareno was quoted by BusinessMirror as saying that the multidisciplinary team created to look into the complaint submitted its findings a few weeks ago, which revealed that Marcventures was operating outside its approved mining area and that its mining operation is unsystematic and that it has caused siltation to a nearby river.

Following the suspension of operations, MGB will also cancel its mineral-processing and sharing agreement (MPSA) with Marcventures, which is approximately about 4,900ha.

According to Jasareno, they notified Marcventures of their illegal operations and gave them three days to show cause, before sending them the suspension order.

Marcventures Holdings protested the suspension saying that MGB action is taken 'arbitrarily and without legal basis'.

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