Peru’s mining industry accounts for 10% of the countries GDP and 60% of the country’s exports. Being the worlds second largest producer of copper, silver and zinc, Peru is well positioned to show growth in the mining industry but is hampered by political instability. Peru’s abundant mineral resources of copper, gold, silver, and lithium are located in predominantly mountainous regions. While Peru has more than adequate resources, political and social instability in recent years has resulted in decreased international investment in the region. Investors are wary of the effects of prolonged strikes and the abilities of mining companies to extract and transport production to the ports for export as well as the governments commitment to supporting the mining industry.
Peru has approximately 200 operational mines and Peru mining jobs increased 4.5% year on year to 237,850 workers directly employed in the mining sector in 2022. The UK is Peru’s largest foreign investor in the mining sector, followed by China, Canada, and the USA. While coper prices have fluctuated in recent years, the demand for copper in the new green energy global market remains high. It is projected that in order to meet global demand, in excess of $91 billion will need to be invested in new copper mines between now and 2030. This translates to enormous opportunity for Peru. Political uncertainty and social conflict aside, the fundamentals of Peru mining are strong. With large metal and mineral reserves and the freedom to import machinery, equipment, and services at a lower cost than previously, there are commercial advantages to operating in Peru.
Peru mining recruitment trends indicate a need to improve diversity and inclusion ratios. Women in particular are underrepresented in leadership positions. In addition to this, the mining sector remains a significant source of social conflict. The two main concerns relate to environmental degradation and the inequitable distribution of mining profits. Local communities frequently do not benefit greatly from mining operations while enormous wealth is generated by the mines themselves. Workers demand better healthcare, education and infrastructure in local communities affected by mining and better stewardship of water and land resources.