We said here yesterday that when Martinelli repealed the controversial mining code, also know as Law 8, this move, although celebrated as a victory by activists and the Ngöbe Buglé tribe, would probably not mean much in terms of actually putting a stop to mining developments.
Well, that didn't take long. We were just forwarded a press release from Inmet on Marketwire, in which the mining giant states that its subsidiary Minera Panama is unaffected by the repeal of the law and that they look forward to working with the government commission that is to write up a new law:
TORONTO, CANADA--(Marketwire - March 3, 2011) - Inmet Mining Corporation (TSX:IMN) announced today that the government of Panama intends to repeal recently enacted legislation, known as Law 8, that modified the Panamanian mineral resources code. The intent to repeal Law 8 recognizes concerns from indigenous communities residing within areas known as Comarcas that are recognized under Panamanian law. Inmet's Cobre Panama project is neither situated on nor adjacent to any Comarcas, and has had government and local community support.
Contract-Law 9 of February 26, 1997, which governs development of the Cobre Panama project, is not affected by the intended repeal of Law 8, and Inmet therefore does not expect that its ability to continue with development of the Cobre Panama project will be adversely affected as a result. Inmet also understands that the government of Panama will in connection with the intended repeal of Law 8 appoint a special commission to consider and recommend to the National Assembly of Panama modifications to the mineral resources code in consultation with affected parties. Inmet is encouraged by the government's initiative to appoint the special commission, and through its subsidiary, Minera Panama S.A., looks forward to participating in such consultations.
Victory? What victory?