Weekly Report - 19 May 2022 (WR-22-20)

ECUADOR : Troubled SolGold looks to expand in mining sector

The Australia-headquartered mining company SolGold has announced plans to invest US$2.7bn in its Cascabel concession in Ecuador’s northern Imbabura province. The company claims the development would turn Cascabel into a global leader in low-cost, low-carbon copper and gold mining. Yet all is not well with SolGold, where an internal audit found last week that US$4.6m had been “misappropriated” by its Ecuadorean branch between 2017 and 2021. More broadly, SolGold will need to contend with an increasingly fraught social and legal backdrop, evidenced on 16 May by an armed attack on a mining concession in Azuay province.

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