Chilean president launches KGHM mine
PR dla Zagranicy
President of Chile Michelle Bachelet officially launched a major new mine co-owned by Polish copper giant KGHM on Wednesday in the Atacama desert, northern Chile.
Chilean president Michelle Bachelet speaks during the inauguration of copper mine Sierra Gorda by Polish mining company KGHM in the Atacama desert, 1,600 km of Santiago de Chile, 01 October 2014. EPA/Mario Ruiz
The Sierra Gorda mine, which is a joint venture of KGHM and Japanese company Sumitomo, is scheduled to operate for about 23 years, and it represents Poland's biggest overseas investment.
“It is enormously satisfying to see how our mining is demonstrating its great vitality and potential for growth,” President Bachelet said.
“Sierra Gorda provides an opportunity to generate jobs for the region,” she stressed, noting that about 4500 people could gain employment as a result of the new venture.
KGHM and Sumitomo have invested 4 million dollars in the site.
Part of Sierra Gorda mine in the Atacama desert, 1 October 2014. EPA/Mario Ruiz
Poland's biggest copper mining company hopes that it will ultimately extract 120,000 tonnes of copper per year from Sierra Gorda, as well as 50 million pounds of molybdenum and 60,000 ounces of gold.
During the inauguration ceremony KGHM chairman Herbert Wirth reflected on the career of Polish geologist Ignacy Domeyko, who the mine is named after.
Born in 1802, Domeyko was one of thousands of Poles who went into exile having taken part in an 1830-31 insurrection against Russian rule (the November Uprising).
He eventually settled in Chile, where he became a distinguished geologist, as well as an advocate for the rights of Chilean tribesmen. (nh)