Protesters block road used by Hudbay to transport copper in Peru

Open pit at Constancia. Photo by Hudbay Minerals.

For a few hours on Sunday, some 40 people from the farming community of Tacrara, located in the Cusco department in southern Peru, blockaded a road used by Canadian miner Hudbay Minerals (TSX, NYSE: HBM) to transport copper from its Constancia project to the Port of Matarani.

Local media report that about 60 trucks carrying mineral were being prevented from leaving Cusco’s Espinar province. The protesters were demanding compensation for the use of a road that, according to them, Hudbay’s trucks were not supposed to be using.

The protesters were demanding compensation for the use of a road that, according to them, Hudbay’s trucks were not supposed to be using.

However, following a meeting with representatives from the Toronto-based company, the activists decided to reopen the road until Monday.

A deal between the parties involved in the skirmish is expected to be signed in the coming hours.

This is not the first time Hudbay has had to negotiate with the communities that surround its operations. Back in 2016, the miner had to suspend activities at Constancia for a few days after a group of locals occupied parts of the pit arguing that the firm had not honoured social agreements signed with authorities of the Chamaca district, about an hour away from the mine.

The Constancia copper porphyry project occupies 2,516 hectares in 36 mineral concessions that span the Chamaca and Livitaca districts in Cusco’s Chumbivilcas province.

The mine reached full and steady-state production in the second half of 2015 and it produced 154,000 tonnes of copper in 2018. Total mineral reserves have been estimated at 568 million tonnes at Cu 0.32%, Mo 99g/t, Au 0.058g/t, and Ag 3.07g/t.

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