Ministry of Mines and Energy. Bogota D.C. June 27th, 2018. The Colombian Government, led by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, ratified its commitments towards responsible governance in the mining sector by becoming a member of the Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development (IGF).
"We are working in order to consolidate Proper Mining Activities, carried out in a responsible manner. We want a mining sector that generates social and economic progress, with mining activities that promote the best social responsibility practices, taking care of the environment and sustainable development. Our IGF membership supports this objective," said the Vice-Minister of Mines, Carlos Andres Cante Puentes.
"We are pleased to welcome Colombia as the 67th member of the IGF. Each nation joins with a unique perspective and deepens our dialogue. We are hopeful about Colombia's participation and applaud its efforts to use mining as a source of sustainable development," said the Director of IGF, Greg Radford.
Over the last few years, Colombia has taken steps to restructure its mining sector, which represents 2% of Colombian GDP, approximately 20% of total exports and 13% of FDI.
"Our large-scale mining activities include a list of strategic projects that we will support in order to help them develop in a more efficient manner," Cante Puentes added.
Regarding small-scale and artisanal mining, Colombia has a mining formalization program that will help small-scale miners to train in the use of higher standards. The Government is also helping subsistence miners to work under a legal framework. The project supports these types of mining for the sake of eliminating the use of mercury in gold processing activities.
Colombia is also working on a new territorial strategy that will ease interactions with the regions, providing better and increased information, strengthening trust in the sector and promoting conversation spaces in order to make progress towards join agreements, especially in terms of territorial organization.
The Intergovernmental Forum on Mining, Minerals, Metals and Sustainable Development supports over 60 nations committed to making use of mining for sustainable development in order to guarantee limited negative impacts and sharing financial benefits. It is in charge of optimizing the benefits of the mining industry in order to reduce poverty and provide inclusive growth, achieve social development as well as environment management. The International Institute for Sustainable Development has served as the Secretariat for the IGF since October 2015. The Canadian central government provides basic funding.