Strategic Issues

The Chilean Copper Commission (Cochilco) advises the Ministry of Mining on the development of public policy within the sector. It creates studies concerning mining investment, water and energy consumption, the metal market and exploration, among other subjects. All of this is made available on their website (www.cochilco.cl).

Cochilco is the main source for statistical mining information about not only Chile but the entire world. They offer background information on production, prices, inventories, exports, employment, and wages among other statistics, all of which are highly required by this particular sector.

Both national and international mining recognize Cochilco as a reliable source of information that provides a timely diagnosis of the main issues facing this sector, generating reports, studies and statistics in the following areas:

Conjectural and prospective monitoring and analysis of strategic issues affecting the sustainable and competitive development of Chilean mining.

Investment in Chilean Mining
Water and Energy Consumption
Exploration company registry
Competitiveness ranking

Investment in Chilean Mining

Mining Projects Portfolio 2014-2023: Prospective annual investment analysis of copper, gold, iron and industrial material mining. Therefore, they update a Project Registry, concerning the development of mining companies within the next ten years.


Investment in Chilean Mining

Water and Energy


Both water and energy are vital elements for mining activities. Likewise, energy holds more of a strategic importance due to its direct link to Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG). Therefore, Cochilco maintains various active areas of work, which combine monitoring both energy and water consumption in copper mining as well as other issues that may arise.

The information is obtained through an annual survey that Cochilco administers to copper producing mining companies —those that are responsible for 95% of the metal’s national production—, the survey requests production data on fuel, electricity and water consumption. This data generates various reports, which among others, provides the following background:

Historical Consumption of Energy and Water in Copper Mining:


In an effort to obtain a greater analysis on consumption within the various mining processes, unitary consumption coefficients are determined, which include both per tone of processed material and per fine copper content. Both are indicators that represent the intensity of the water and energy usage in each process.

Energy: Update Report on Energy Usage in Copper Mining for 2014

Water: Hydrological Consumption in Copper Mining for 2014

Projected electricity and water consumption in copper mining, 2014-2025:


A survey is administered to companies in order to collect information on the projected annual energy and water production and overall demand within within a 10-year horizon. Desalination plants and impulsion systems are considered for such projections.

Water: Water consumption projection in copper mining through 2026

Energy: Energy consumption projection in copper mining through 2026

Exploration Company Registry


Given the importance exploration companies have in the discovery of both new resources and the future development of mining activities in the country, this particular area of work began in 2012 and a registry is now annually updated to include these small and medium sized exploration companies. This 2015 report confirms 108 companies and 259 prospects. Among the companies, 70 are considered junior type and the majority come from Canada and Australia.

Exploration Company Registry 2015

The Yearbook

The Yearbook: Cooper and Other Mineral Statistics, which Cochilco publishes each year, accounts for major mining statistics within the past 20 years.
Yearbook: Copper and other Mineral Statistics

Exploration activity’s force is a sign of Chile’s attractiveness for mining investment.


Competitiveness Ranking in Chilean Mining

In a complex global mining market setting, associated with a decrease in metal prices and limited availability of financing, it is essential to analyze the factors which influence national competitiveness and from there, take both corrective and/or preventative measures to promote mining in Chile.


This area of work began in 2012, and presents a comparative analysis of Chile’s competitiveness in the international arena, with an objective of identifying both the strengths and weaknesses of national mining over the competition. Therefore, the most updated international indices were collected and combined in order to assess various factors relevant to the investment climate and geopolitical potential, both crucial pillars for international mining investment.

In this ranking, Chile scored a 5.3, putting them in fourth place, directly behind countries with a higher level of economic development. It should be noted that Chile is separated from the rest of the middle to low income countries by one point, and maintains a considerable distance.


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