August 10, 2020 #ChileDiverse

The important role played by miners in a key industry for Chile

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Mining currently employs almost 44,000 workers in operations and sites and another 18,000 people in supplier companies. This is an area that has historically been dominated by men, but that reality is slowly changing. Women are gaining ground.

Until 1996, women were excluded by law from working in mining. There were prejudices and myths that prevented women from being present at mining sites. But finally, the Labor Code eliminated this restriction and things have been changing. Today, according to data from the Chilean Copper Commission, women represent 10% of the national mining workforce. This is still a low figure, but it represents a great social advance and the number is on the rise.

Safety is key, especially after the accident of the 33 miners who were successfully rescued in 2010. "It marked a before and after in terms of prevention and oversight," Mining Minister Baldo Prokurica told EFE. The figures prove it, and Chile has made progress in this area to protect the safety of its miners. Ten years ago, the fatality rate was 0.12 (45 fatalities), and in 2019 that figure was reduced to 0.03 (14 fatalities), i.e. a 75% decrease, according to the Chilean Mining Ministry.

Thanks to the efforts of miners, talent, creativity and the ability to adapt that characterizes Chileans, today mining is a key sector for our economy and for the supply of copper in the world. Chile is the main global producer and has a third of the world's reserves. That is why mining is one of the sectors that receives the most foreign investment in the country. According to data from the Mining Council and the Central Bank of Chile, about 18% of all investments made in 2018 belonged to this item.
Congratulations to all miners in Chile on their day! Your work and effort are vital for the country.


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