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Mining Sector Unites at PMRC Forum, Push for Positive Shift on Industry Perception

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IN a bid to address long-standing challenges concerning public perception, mining industry leaders in the Caraga Region convene to underscore the importance of enhanced transparency, centered on the revised Philippine Mineral Reporting Code’s (PMRC) potential impact on the industry’s reputation and its significant contribution to the local and national economy.

Held as part of the weeklong Caraga Resilient Mining Week (CRMW), the PMRC Forum, themed “Understanding the Philippine Mineral Reporting Code,” provides a crucial platform for participants from different mining firms, local government units, and academe to understand the objectives and implications of the revised policy.

The new PMRC is slated for full implementation on September 21 and is mandated to be followed by all mining companies.

Philippine Mining and Exploration Association (PMEA) President and PMRCC Representative Joey Nelson R. Ayson emphasized transparency, materiality, and competence as the guiding principles of the policy.

Notable changes under the revised PMRC is the disclosure of the Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) information from the mining operators, subject to review by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE). Moreover, the updated policy introduces the “if not, why not” principle, holding operators accountable for both commission and omission of responsibilities. The more stringent compliance measures aim to foster credibility and trust among stakeholders, investors, and the public and set a new standard for responsible mining practices.

In addition, Engr. Enrico C. Nera, another representative from the PMRCC, points out the impact of the revised policy on the economy.

“More investments in the mining industry because we now have a reporting code that is compatible with other international codes,” he added.

Furthermore, the PMRC 2020 incorporates a sustainability clause that requires public reports disclosing environmental, social and health, and safety impacts expected throughout the mine’s development, operation, and post-closure phases.

The forum also opened the conversation about “Toward Sustainable Mining” (TSM), a globally recognized sustainability program that supports mining companies in responsibly managing key environmental and social risks.

Chamber of Mines Vice President for Communications & National Coordinator for TSM, Rocky Dimaculangan emphasized how TSM enables mining companies to turn their commitments into action while responsibly meeting the demand for minerals. 

“Beyond compliance, it does not mean that if you failed TSM, you do not comply with the law. It only means that if you participate in TSM… you go beyond the word of the law,” he clarified.

With the PMRC 2020 guiding the course, the mining industry is determined to change its story and work towards a future characterized by sustainable and responsible mining operations.

“Mining companies, miners, mining operators, claim owners, do not own the minerals.  Some people in the industry complain about mining being a strictly regulated industry.  I should say, it must be.  Because at the end of the day, we are just stewards of this patrimony.” Engr. Rolando Cruz the Vice President of Nickel Asia Corporation for Mining Business and one of the authors of the PMRC 2020, ended.

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