Mining: Ecuador gets Best Country of the Year award
It was Ecuador’s night at the Mining and Money America’s Outstanding Achievement Awards’ night in Toronto, Canada. The contingent, led by Minister of Mining Javier Felipe Córdova, couldn’t control their glee when they received the award for Best Country of the Year.
“I take a lot of pride in our teamwork,” said Córdovaas he accepted the award from Anthony Vaccaro, group publisher of The Northern Miner Group at Glacier Media. “We did this together and I have to thank the companies that have trusted in Ecuador.”
The Best Country of the Year award goes to the country that has shown the best improvement in attractiveness to mineral investors or as Vaccaro put it, “the country that generated a lot of buzz and investor interest.” Ecuador’s win is an acknowledgement of the importance of the country’s growing mining industry. This comes as the government embarks on a rigorous plan to encourage $4.6 billion (US) in investment during the next four years. Most of this will come from direct foreign investment in three mines: Mirador, Fruta del Norte and Rio Blanco, supported by newer projects.
The Ecuadorian government worked with Mackenzie Investments for the last three years to revamp their tax incentives and develop incentives like the fiscal stability agreement, VAT reimbursements and providing options for companies to recover their investments before taxes are applied. They also removed the 70 percent windfall tax that discouraged foreign investment.
The accolades kept coming at the Mining and Money America’s Outstanding Achievement Awards. Australian gold and copper mining company SolGold was nominated and won for the Exploration Award – Latin America. Calling Ecuador “the best country to do exploration in the world,” the SolGold team thanked the Ecuadorean government for opening up the country and encouraging investments. SolGold has had a presence in Ecuador since 2012, and is currently focusing on the Cascabel mine in the North Andean Copper Belt, called one of the top five underdeveloped copper-gold deposits in the world.
Nick Mather, CEO of SolGold took home the CEO of the Year award for Latin America and also thanked Ecuador, praising the efforts made by the government to encourage foreign investments.
Cordova, cradling the Best Country award, said that the praise is proof that his country is on the right track. “It makes us more committed to know that companies trust us.”
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