Chilean environmental authorities have approved Barrick Gold’s $38m proposal to expand the production capacity of its Zaldivar copper mine in the northern Antofagasta region.

The company’s environmental impact study has been approved, which now paves the way to increase extraction by 20% to 260,000t per day compared to the earlier 220,000t a day at the copper mine, according to Reuters.

The company said the investment will be focused on revamping processing lines and increasing the logistics units.

The mine on average produces 125,000t of copper per annum, with a major portion being produced in the form of cathodes.

Barrick is also in the process of developing its Pascua-Lama gold-silver mine on the Argentina-Chile border.