Miner BHP sees rise of Covid-19 cases in Chile's largest mine

Global mining group suffers covid-19 upsurge in workers, thought to be coming from nearby Calama

Global miner BHP Group Ltd has announced stricter health protocols following coronavirus cases at its Escondida copper mine in Chile, the worlds largest, reached 150, with 59 at its smaller Spence deposit.

BHP said 76 of those cases remained active and that the discovery of new cases suggested a “stabilisation and tendency toward decline”.

It added: “This is a dynamic situation that can change rapidly, which is why we are making our best effort to implement all measures necessary to protect the health of our workers and contractors.”

A rise in cases in the city of Calama had led BHP workers flying into the mines via the nearby Antofagasta airport instead, the company said. Workers were being encouraged to observe stricter social-distancing measures during trips.

BHP is one of a number of major miners operating in Chile to have upgraded safety measures in recent weeks as the world’s number one copper producer reaches the peak of coronavirus cases and deaths, and hospitals fill up.

Last week, state-owned copper miner Codelco, the worlds biggest, announced a strengthening of safety measures including a 14-day-on, 14-day-off shift schedule and the suspension of some construction projects after two workers died from the virus. 

What is your sentiment on BHP?

50.01
Bullish
or
Bearish
Vote to see community's results!

Chilean Mining Minister Baldo Prokurica has stated the need to strike a balance between protecting mine workers from the coronavirus and keeping the country’s economic engine running.

Prokurica said the “indispensable” mining sector had frozen the operations of about half its workforce through measures such as remote working, shift changes and suspension of projects, and tightened health protocols in response to the outbreak of the virus in Chile in March.

But the mining industry needs to keep operating, he said, if the government is to sustain emergency social support packages to address economic fallout from the pandemic.

FURTHER READING: Rio Tinto to hold further talks on heritage site blasts

FURTHER READING: BP to take hit of up to $17.5bn assets as it forecasts lower oil prices

The material provided on this website is for information purposes only and should not be regarded as investment research or investment advice. Any opinion that may be provided on this page is a subjective point of view of the author and does not constitute a recommendation by Currency Com Bel LLC or its partners. We do not make any endorsements or warranty on the accuracy or completeness of the information that is provided on this page. By relying on the information on this page, you acknowledge that you are acting knowingly and independently and that you accept all the risks involved.
iPhone Image
Trade the world’s top tokenised stocks, indices, commodities and currencies with the help of crypto or fiat
iMac Image
Trade the world’s top tokenised stocks, indices, commodities and currencies with the help of crypto or fiat
iMac Image