Ecuador is expecting a $7bn investment in gold and copper projects in the next seven years from mining firms including Kinross Gold of Canada.

Ecuador’s natural resources minister Wilson Pastor told Reuters that mining companies will invest in five projects, with three companies signing the agreements by June and the two other deals to be completed next year.

Kinross Gold, Ecuacorriente of Canada and International Resources of US are among the firms that will invest in Ecuador.

Kinross will make an investment of $1.1bn in the Fruta del Norte project to produce 410,000 gold-equivalent ounces per year over the life of the mine.

Fruta del Norte project has proven and probable mineral reserves of 6.8 million ounces of gold and 9.1 million ounces of silver.

Ecuacorriente is planning to build a copper mine with an investment of $631m.