Apr. 18, 2017 : Global Ferronickel profits plunge 97%

Apr. 18, 2017 : Global Ferronickel profit plunges 97%

In a regulatory filing, the country’s second top nickel supplier said its net income plunged 97% to P37.5 million in 2016, from P1.11 billion in 2015.

Gross revenues dropped by 51% to P1.46 billion last year, from P3.02 billion in 2015.

GFNi said sale of nickel ore generated total export revenues of P3.77 billion, 42% lower from 2015’s P6.53 billion. This was attributed to “lower volume shipped, change in product mix and decline in the selling price of nickel ore.”

Total nickel ore shipped last year from its Cagdianao mine in Surigao del Sur, its lone operating mine, reached 4.309 million wet metric tons (WMT) of nickel ore, 19% lower than the 5.352 million WMT of nickel ore exported in the prior year. The shipments were delivered solely to customers in China.

“The reduction in shipments was brought about by unfavorable weather conditions which affected production and loading operations. The decrease in the export revenues was aggravated by the decline of nickel ore price from last year’s average of US$26.69/WMT to only US$17.93/WMT average for the year ended Dec. 31, 2016 lower by US$8.76/WMT or 33%,” GFNi said.

Apr. 18, 2017: Duterte renews appointment of Gina Lopez, 3 other Cabinet members

Apr. 18, 2017: Duterte renews appointment of Gina Lopez, 3 other Cabinet members

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte once again renewed the appointments of 4 Cabinet secretaries after they were bypassed by Congress.

Duterte issued ad interim appointments of the following officials, according to the Office of Executive Secretary in a message sent on Monday, April 17:

  • Environment Secretary Gina Lopez
  • Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano
  • Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo
  • Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial

Lopez faces the fiercest opposition to her appointment after large mining firms came together to protest her closure of some mines.

No less than a fellow Cabinet member, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, has expressed criticism for her policies and decision-making process.

Apr. 18, 2017: Gina Lopez — Philippines can earn more from investments in biodiversity than in mining

Apr. 18, 2017: Gina Lopez — Philippines can earn more from investments in biodiversity than in mining

The criticism over her decisions, orders, and what she believes in have been overwhelming in the past months. But Environment Secretary Gina Lopez still thinks that the Philippines can earn more from investments in biodiversity than in mining.

Since the beginning of her takeover at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Lopez already made it clear that except for those that are, in any way, mining-related, she will consider any project that can be beneficial to the environment and the communities.

Lopez, in a roundtable discussion with Manila Bulletin on Monday, said she prefers billions of pesos worth of investments to go to biodiversity and area development rather than to the mining sector.

The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) earlier projected that the country is poised to make at least $30 billion from mining investments over the next 10 years but Lopez believes this wouldn’t necessarily benefit the Filipino people.

For this year, she allotted a bulk of DENR’s P29-billion budget to massive reforestation and climate change initiatives instead.

According to her, as she continues leadership within the agency, more funds will go to the development of biodiversity, ecotourism, and more green projects.

Apr. 17, 2017: Oceanagold empowering coops for sustainability

Apr. 17, 2017: Oceanagold empowering coops for sustainability

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya—Recognizing the challenge of economic sustainability through cooperatives, Asia-Pacific miner OceanaGold spent more than P5 million last year from its Social Development Management funds to support “enterprise development and agricultural credit projects.”

Thirteen cooperatives were established after the success of the multi-million enterprise Didipio Community Development Corp. or DiCorp in Barangay Didipio, Kasibu Nueva Vizcaya. Barangay Didipio is the community hosting OceanaGold’s Didipio Mine. These cooperatives will be focused on helping to ensure the sustainability of the livelihood programs beyond the life of the Didipio mine.

DiCorp was established through the assistance of OceanaGold. The main goal is to train residents achieve a self-sufficient local economy during the mine’s operation and after the mine is exhausted and eventually closed.

Owned and managed by long-time residents of Didipio, the corporation now employs over 300 employees, generated P932 million in gross revenue from long-term Didipio mine contracts from 2011 to 2016. DiCorp has been awarded by BIR as one of the top tax payers in Nueva Vizcaya.

Apr. 17, 2017: Lopez attacking rival miners

Apr. 17, 2017: Lopez attacking rival miners
“ABS-CBN has interests in mining. They have a mining subsidiary,” — Pres. Duterte

DOHA—President Rodrigo Duterte stepped up his attacks against media organizations perceived to be critical of his administration, this time taking on the Lopez family which owns broadcast giant ABS-CBN, accusing them of keeping sacred cows and attacking rival mining firms to protect their own mining interests.

Duterte again picked on ABS-CBN and the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and said a Lopez subsidiary was engaged in mining.

“ABS-CBN has interests in mining. They have a mining subsidiary,” he said in Filipino.

Duterte’s Environment Secretary, Regina Lopez, is part of the clan that owns ABS-CBN. The family has diversified interests in media, telecommunications; power generation and distribution; manufacturing; and property development.

Apr. 17, 2017: MGB extends mine rehab tie-up with South Korea’s MIRECO

Apr. 17, 2017: MGB extends mine rehab tie-up with South Korea’s MIRECO
Date issued: April 17, 2017
THE Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) has extended its partnership with South Korea’s Mine Reclamation Corp. (MIRECO) to improve its capacity to undertake mine rehabilitation and reclamation projects.
In the memorandum of agreement (MoA) seen by BusinessWorld, signed on March 28, the partnership seeks “to promote joint collaboration in mine reclamation/rehabilitation and develop partnerships through cooperative activities between the parties.”
The MGB and the South Korean state-run corporation agreed to undertake projects to improving mine hazard management systems, policies and strategies, and upgrade the partnership in the field of risk assessment and preparation of environmental plans.
“The MoA is for joint cooperation in mine reclamation/rehabilitation, training, sharing of information and conduct of joint research,” said MGB Director Mario Luis J. Jacinto in a mobile message over the weekend.
“We expect very productive and meaningful cooperation and collaborative undertakings with MIRECO and explore joint projects in mine rehabilitation research and laboratory facilities with possible assistance from KOICA (Korea International Cooperation Agency),” Mr. Jacinto added.
The agreement is valid for five years and shall be automatically renewed unless one of the parties expresses a desire to terminate the deal.
The MGB’s ties with MIRECO date to 2006.

Apr. 16, 2017: Lopez vows continued help to Limay coal ash victims

Apr. 16, 2017: Lopez vows continued help to Limay coal ash victims


Environment Secretary Gina Lopez has vowed not to let up her efforts to help residents living near a coal-fired power plant operating inside the refinery of oil giant Petron Corp. in Limay town in Bataan province.

Lopez made the assurance after Limay residents trooped to the DENR central office in Quezon City to complain anew of the ash residue of SMC Consolidated Power Corp. (SMCCPC) which made some of them ill.

“Trust me, I’m not gonna let you down,” Lopez told the residents during a dialogue held inside her office.

Officials of the DENR’s Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), Petron and SMCCPC were also present during the dialogue. Both Petron and SMCCPC are subsidiaries of San Miguel Corp., one of the country’s most diversified and biggest conglomerates.

The residents complained of water pollution, dust, foul odor and noise coming from the refinery complex. They also traced the frequent respiratory illnesses suffered by many of them to the coal plant within the complex.

According to the residents, their health conditions have deteriorated since coal plant started operation in 2013. They averred that their cough, colds and asthma have become persistent despite regular checkups and medications.

The residents also cited a study by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources on the presence of hazardous substances like cadium and mercury in the fish caught in the coast of Limay.


Full story here

Apr. 15, 2017: FNI starts nickel shipment to China

Apr. 15, 2017: FNI starts nickel shipment to China

MANILA, Philippines – Listed Global Ferronickel Holdings Inc. (FNI) has begun shipment of nickel ore shipment to China of about 550,000 wet metric tons (WMT).

In a regulatory filing, FNI said subsidiary Platinum Group Metals Corp. (PGMC) commenced delivery of nickel ore from Surigao del Norte.

Another nine vessels are expected to be shipped until next month. Average capacity per shipment is about 55,000 WMT.

“We’ve had an early start to mining operations this year due to favorable weather conditions. We look forward to continued good weather in the weeks and months to come to meet our 2017 target,” FNI president Dante Bravo said.

Apr. 15, 2017: Championing peace by making Canadian corporations accountable

Apr. 15, 2017: Championing peace by making Canadian corporations accountable


A five-member delegation from the Philippines toured Canada from March 20 to April 5 to speak with Parliamentarians and Canadians about the impacts of Canadian mining on their communities. Two members of the visiting delegation were Indigenous Subanen women from Mindanao. They allege that Canadian mining operations in their communities have led to contaminated drinking water, an increase in gender-based violence, and none of the economic benefits that were promised to their communities.

When representatives from Canadian civil society groups visited Mindanao in 2014 as part of a KAIROS-led learning tour, they reviewed credible evidence of numerous human rights violations allegedly associated with Canadian mining operations on the island, including kidnapping, arrest, torture displacement and loss of livelihood.

After reviewing evidence and listening to testimonies from affected communities, members of the tour called on the Philippine government to investigate these claims and cease all mining operations until the safety of the local people, including those opposed to the presence of large scale mining, can be assured.


Full story here

Apr. 14, 2017: Lopez sacks 6 CL executives

Apr. 14, 2017: Lopez sacks 6 CL executives

CABANATUAN CITY—Six more top-level officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Central Luzon have been replaced and given new assignments, including one who was given a province-wide position in the latest reshuffle ordered by Secretary Gina Lopez.

The six were community environment and natural resources officers Alfredo Collado, Jimmy Aberin, Ricardo Lazaro, Gerundio Fernandez and Florencio Lalo and Mariano Miguel.

Collado, Cenro of Camiling, Tarlac was designated as the new provincial environment and natural resources officer, replacing the caretaker Cherry Claudio who temporarily took over following the retirement late last month of Leovino Ignacio.

DENR Secretary Gina Lopez


Collado, previously assigned in Casiguran, Aurora was replaced by Miguel.

Aberin and Lazaro, Cenros of Baler and Cabanatuan, respectively, swapped posts while Lalo, Cenro in Dinalupihan, Bataan took the post of Fernandez, Cenro of the Science City of Muñoz in Nueva Ecija.