Colombia’s National Authority of Environmental Licences (ANLA in Spanish) announced over the weekend its decision to shelf the licensing application for Sociedad Minera de Santander’s proposed Soto Norte gold project, on acccount of too many doubts around certain aspects presented in the project’s environmental impact assessment and follow-up documentation submitted by the company at ANLA’s request. Minesa, is owned by the government of Abu Dhabi through its investment arm Mubadala Investment Company. Minesa’s proposal is a $1.2-billion operation to be located in the north-central Santander department, just outside the Páramo de Santurbán, where mining was banned in 2011.
The Government of Colombia filed with the Economic Commissions of the House of Representatives of the National Congress the budget for the General System of Royalties for the 2021-2022 biennium, which amounts to $ 4,390 million. Compared to the 2019-2020 biennium, there is a reduction of $490 mm amid the oil price crisis and lower demand due to mobility restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Works are part of the "Commitment to Colombia" recovery plan. The Pacific-Orinoquia Connection, in the the eastern region, is one of the connectivity projects considered strategic for the country.
10% of microenterprises in Colombia declared bankruptcy due to the covid-19 pandemic, according to a study carried out by the Interactuar Corporation to learn about the impact of the reduction in commercial activities during lockdown. The survey data also indicates that 65.7% of these companies ran out of cash to finance their operations and that 53% presented a decrease in their sales of more than 50%.
Colombia's mining future is in metals and not coal, Minister of Mines and Energy Diego Mesa said, and the Andean country will continue developing oil and gas projects, including non-conventional deposits. With mining concessions covering just 3% of Colombia's territory and mining operations in less than 1% of the country, there is great opportunity, particularly for gold, copper and nickel mining. Colombia is the world's fifth-largest coal.