The mining industry in the Andean countries has the potential for contributing to economic growth and social development as well as the environmental big push in pursuit of sustainable development, in line with the imperatives of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In contrast to the positive aspects of the sector, it also presents widespread environmental damage, tremendous economic expenses, and social impacts, especially socio-environmental conflicts related to mining. Climate and environmental risks are pushing forward a global transition towards cleaner energy production and mobility, for which natural resources are needed. For the technological developments related with decarbonization, large quantities of minerals and metals will continue to be demanded, many of whom, such as lithium and copper, are widely present in the Andean countries, creating relevant challenges and opportunities for these countries. On the demand side, countries that are consumers of commodities are increasingly concerned regarding the development and certification of sustainable supply chains that respect human rights and the environment along the whole chain. Within this context, the 2030 Agenda and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are articulated as a common language and viewpoint amongst all stakeholders involved in mining supply chains in order to progress towards innovative solutions for a sustainable mining.

Thus, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has commissioned the GIZ and the BGR to jointly carry out the programme “Regional Cooperation for the Sustainable Management of Mining in the Andean Countries”. The United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) is the regional partner.

Objective

The objective of the programme is to provide support to the Andean countries in the establishment of conceptual and technical requirements for the alignment of their mining sector with the chosen Sustainable Development Goals.

The mining sector has great potential to foster the management of sustainable social development. The programme lends guidance to the Andean countries in harnessing this potential and promotes measures for boosting regional cooperation between the Andean countries in the mining industry and increasing the contribution of the mining sector to the fulfilment of the 2030 Agenda. Thus, challenges to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda should be recognized and overcome.

The programme therefore aims to contribute to the fulfilment of the following SDGs:

  1. Good Health and Well-being
  2. Gender Equality
  3. Clean Water and Sanitation
  4. Decent Work and Economic Growth
  5. Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  6. Responsible Consumption and Production
  7. Climate Action
  8. Life on Land
  9. Peace and Justice
  10. Partnerships for the goals

Approach

The programme is aimed at the promotion and implementation of international standards as well as the 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Goals. As a UN organization, ECLAC takes on a central role in the strategic and conceptual design of the programme and in the development of regional policies and strategies related to the fulfilment of the 2030 Agenda, and the programme is expected to have an impact at both the regional and national levels. Thus, possible solutions will be implemented and learning experiences from the partners exchanged regionally. The programme is a fundamental part of the multi-stakeholder approach and is actively working together with actors from governmental institutions, the private sector and civil society organizations. The close cooperation between GIZ and BGR makes it possible to address pertinent issues of the mining industry in a comprehensive professional and development policy.

The programme work is divided into three areas of activity:

  • (i) Policies and Strategies
  • (ii) Stakeholder Governance
  • (iii) the Transfer of Technology and Innovation. GIZ assumes leadership of areas (i) and (ii), while BGR takes on the responsibility for area of activity (iii)

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About CEPAL

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CEPAL