Regional cooperation for the sustainable management of mining in the Andean countries
Title: Regional cooperation for the sustainable management of mining in the Andean countries
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Countries: Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Colombia, Peru
Regional executing agency: United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
Overall term: 2016 to 2019
Mining makes an important contribution to fulfilling the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Andean countries. The sector, which has traditionally played a major role in the country’s economic development, its relevance to the employment market and significant investments are particular important in this respect. However, these opportunities are also accompanied by risks associated with achieving the individual Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and implementing the principles of the 2030 Agenda. Key challenges include pollution, immense expenditure, social impacts and conflicts.
Increasing environmental awareness and rising expectations regarding responsible mining and use of natural resources by producers and consumers require more transparent, socially acceptable and participatory management of the mining sector.
Following a phase of low mineral prices, the Andean region is expecting another mineral boom. This is due to the growing demand for minerals such as lithium, copper, gold and silver in particular, which are necessary for the transition to clean energy and transport. The establishment of sustainable supply chains, a more thorough alignment of the sector to the 2030 Agenda, and both environmentally friendly and socially responsible mineral production are key issues in the region. The importance of the Andean countries in this area is also reflected in Germany’s mineral partnerships with Peru and Chile.
The first steps have been taken towards aligning the mining sector to with the criteria for sustainability. However, the strategic discussion on the possible contribution of this sector of the economy to fulfilling the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the Andean countries is still in its infancy.
Andean countries have the conceptual frameworks for aligning the mining industry with selected SDGs in the 2030 Agenda.
The programme supports Andean countries in identifying the potential and risks of the mining sector for sustainable development in accordance with the 2030 Agenda. It supports measures that strengthen regional cooperation and dialogue between the Andean countries in the thematic area of mining, with a view to encouraging positive contributions to the 2030 Agenda and reducing risks.
Together with a project by the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), GIZ cooperates with the regional executing agency, the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), in three thematic areas:
- Policies and strategies
- Stakeholder governance - good governance of the stakeholder groups involved from the state, private sector and civil society
- Transfer of technology and innovation
The programme works on a pilot basis in individual countries to encourage regional dialogue on specific issues. The exchange is based on documented experience from the Andean countries and international learning experiences. A key element of the programme is the multi-stakeholder approach. This means that it works together with state actors, civil society organisations and businesses. Close cooperation between GIZ and BGR means that key issues of the mining industry can be comprehensively addressed by technical and development experts.
The issue of sustainable mining management has been regionally embedded thanks to the programme’s support. More than 800 people are discussing sustainability issues in the mining industry in networks involving various stakeholders.
Over 150 people have received training on a range of sustainability issues within the sector, such as implementing the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), combating tax fraud and evasion, as well as hazardous waste management.
The development of innovative mining technologies has been promoted through partnerships with the private sector.
The capacities of civil society organisations and regional and national networks for analysis and networking have been increased.