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Economy & Business - February 2021

Ecuador’s mining industry at a crossroads

Ecuador’s mining sector grew substantially in 2020, albeit from a low base, as large-scale mining production accelerated rapidly after being launched in late 2019. Optimism about the sector’s prospects has increased following the first round of Ecuador’s presidential election in February, with two pro-mining candidates – Andrés Arauz of the left-wing Unión por la Esperanza coalition, and Guillermo Lasso of the right-wing Movimiento Creo – looking likely to go head-to-head in the second round of voting. Nonetheless, logistical difficulties and fierce local opposition present challenges that could still impede the development of the nascent industry.

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