DAVAO, Philippines: Incoming Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Tuesday he would order a comprehensive review of mining projects in the country, warning he would cancel operations that are causing environmental harm.
“There will be a comprehensive review of the mining claims of concessions given. And you must endeavour, if you are into it, be sure that you have enough resources” Duterte told a business conference.
“For I will require you to go to Canada or Australia, learn how to mine the precious metals inside the bowels of the earth and do it. Because … (if) you are spoiling the land, I will cancel it without hesitation.”
The Southeast Asian nation has among the largest untapped mineral resources in the region but years of opposition from the Catholic Church and a strong anti-mining lobby, as well as insurgency and widespread corruption, have stalled many projects including the US$5.9 billion gold-copper Tampakan project in the southern Mindanao island discovered in 1991.