Manila, Nov 21 (EFE) .- The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, has decided to maintain the veto of open-pit mining in the country despite attempts to reactivate it from his own Government and the pressure of the mining companies, informed its spokesman, Harry Roque.
"I have personally confirmed it with the president, saying that the ban on mining operations in the sky Open is still standing, "Roque said at a press conference.
The prohibition of this controversial technique of mineral extraction, which is attributed a strong impact on the environment natural, was the work of the former Secretary of Environment Regina Lopez, a declared environmentalist who was relieved of his position last May by the pressures of mining companies.
Little before his dismissal, Lopez issued an administrative order to veto the opening of new open-pit copper, gold, silver and other mineral openings.
With the approval of the new minister, Roy Cimatu, the Mining Industry Coordinating Council (MICC) of the Philippine Government voted in late October in favor of lifting the ban and allowing mining to open sky in this country of 100 million inhabitants and an area of �??�??300,000 square kilometers.
Duterte, who has the last word and has already shown his support for the previous minister, said that "there is still no new policy" to regulate the opening of new mining operations and therefore the decision of the Environment Council will not be implemented by the moment, according to its spokesman.
The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP), which represents 26 mining companies operating in the country, expressed in a statement its desire for the president to lift as soon as the prohibition, while environmental organizations celebrated the declaration of intentions of Duterte.
In the Philippines there are currently 41 mines, of which 27 nickel make the country the world's largest exporter of this mineral.