Chile Copper Giant Codelco to invest over US$4.3 bln in 2012

Chilean state giant Codelco, the world's biggest copper producer, plans to invest over US$4.3 billion this year, said the company’s president Diego Hernandez said on Tuesday, reports Minería Chilena.

At least US$2.2 billion will be allocated to key projects, such as Ministro Hales mine, the expansion of El Teniente and the underground portion of Chuquicamata, where a feasibility study is ongoing.

Hernandez said that the implementation of these projects will generate 16,200 jobs.

The company, which produced a record 1.735 million tons of copper in 2011, is facing a complex year production-wise, said Hernandez, adding that “it will be hard to match 2011 output.”