Argentina’s Salta Province to issue tender for mining projects in Arizaro salt flat

Arizaro salt flat. (Image by Ben Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons.)

The Salta Energy and Mining Resources company (Remsa), which is responsible for managing the sector in the northwestern Argentinian province of Salta, is expected to launch a tender in mid-August for the concession of 37,000 hectares in the Arizaro salt flat.

Arizaro is located in the central-western part of the Atacama Plateau and covers an area of 1,600 square kilometres, which makes it the sixth-largest salt flat in the world and the second-largest in Argentina after the Salinas Grandes.

According to local media, the edicts for the bidding process will be published by the end of June.

Citing information from Remsa’s head, Alberto Castillo, El Tribuno newspaper states that about 15 companies have shown interest in the deposit and could potentially participate in the tender. 

The process will be supervised by the Salta Mines Court, while the regional Ministry of Mining and Energy will oversee the development of the deposits. 

The Arizaro fraction that will be tendered in August is called Remsa 10. The winning company will be expected to invest in infrastructure projects such as roads, solar parks and gas pipelines, among others. Bidders will also have to establish net-smelter return percentages in favour of Remsa. 

Finally, competing companies will have to estimate and report their projects’ carbon emissions and propose offset plans that can range from reforestation programmes or landfill-fed biogas plants.