Lima, JULY 21 2022René Muga, BHP Vice-President: We have invested over US$ 4 Billion in construction of desalination plants in Chile

René Muga, BHP Vice-President: We have invested over US$ 4 Billion in construction of desalination plants in Chile

BHP is one of the key players in the global mining industry and will be present at the most important Mining Convention in Latin America to share its good practices and contribution to social development. René Muga, VP Corporate Affairs Minerals Americas, talks about the company’s strategies to grow in a sustainable manner, continue generating value, and overcome the sector’s own challenges.

1.     How does PERUMIN fit in BHP goals?

BHP is present in Peru for eight years now and wishes to continue growing together. We currently have copper exploration projects in six regions around the country. This means that the way we are doing mining at BHP, enables us to develop an important work together with indigenous communities, generate social value, and contribute actively to the country’s social development. Within this context, PERUMIN becomes a highly relevant instance of direct connection with Peru.

We want Peruvians to know first-hand that at BHP, as the world’s largest natural resources company, we do not only acknowledge the potential of its mining industry but also its people, and the growth opportunities that we envision together. 

2.     What information or news does BHP expect to share with PERUMIN visitors? 

Last year, due to COVID-19, we participated on virtual mode; but now, to be able to be present this year at Peru’s most important mining event is crucial to us.

BHP’s purpose is to gather people and resources to build a better world. We want to show at PERUMIN that this is possible, that it is indeed possible to do mining following world-class standards, being responsible with the environment, and that we are able to positively contribute to the communities in an inclusive and diverse manner. 

We invite you all to visit us at PERUMIN: we have a story in common with Peru that we want to keep on growing.

 3.     What are BHP strategies to unlock the potential of their mines around the world?

BHP has a big goal: to grow in a sustainable manner, to generate social value and to provide raw materials the new world needs, that is, copper for decarbonization and energy transition, potash for a sustainable agriculture, iron ore for city infrastructure, nickel for electric vehicles.

All this translates into a global growth plan based on four axes: maximum optimization of our existing operations, search of new opportunities through new exploration projects, engagement in projects at their early development stages, and attention to merges or acquisitions to continue expanding our business.

4.     How is BHP facing the effects of drought in Chile at their mining operations?    

BHP is pioneer on desalination and Chile is a great example of that. Fifteen years ago, we started to invest in the construction of desalination plants and we have already invested more than US$ 4 Billion. This has enabled Escondida –the largest copper producer in the world– to operate solely with seawater. The same occurs at Spence, supplied with desalinated water thanks to the construction of a new desalination plant at the Port of Mejillones. 

5.     What is BHP’s perception on the political scenario and mining future?

At BHP we are deeply respectful of the democratic processes at each of the countries where we operate. Likewise, as a company with more than 135 years of history and presence in over 90 places, we know that changes in the political and social cycles are natural.

Regarding mining future, we are sure that Peru is destined to become a key player. The world of the future will need more and more copper for electrification, decarbonization, and energy transition. We think that Peru, as the great copper producer it is, cannot miss this opportunity.

Newsletter PERUMIN 35

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