Freeport-McMoRan in talks to allow limited operations at Peru’s Cerro Verde mine

Cerro Verde operation. Photo by Freeport-McMoran

Freeport-McMoRan Inc said on Thursday it was in talks with the Peruvian government to conduct limited operations at its giant Cerro Verde mine after the country extended a national emergency due to the coronavirus outbreak to April 12.

The mine was temporarily transitioned to a care and maintenance status on March 16 after the Peruvian government declared a 15-day emergency to battle the virus.

President Martin Vizcarra on Thursday extended the country’s state of emergency until April 12 as confirmed cases of coronavirus rose to 580.

Miners in the country have been forced to slow or suspend operations with the government strictly curbing movement and activity with military presence on the streets to halt the virus.

Freeport-McMoRan Inc, the world’s largest publicly traded copper producer, said on Monday it will stop dividend payouts and slash costs and output due to the rapid worldwide spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

The company owns 53.56% of Cerro Verde.

(By Aishwarya Nair; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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