Codelco Budgets for Chuquicamata Block Cave
Chuquicamata is the world’s largest open-pit mine and has been in production for nearly 100 years. Over the past 10 years, the mine has been dealing with lower grades, increasing costs and lower production. Codelco anticipates that the transition to underground mining will extend the mine’s life by 40 years.
Construction of the Chuquicamata underground mine will require driving approximately 180 km of tunnels for mine access and egress. By the time mine life ends in about 2060, more than 1,000 m of tunnels will have been opened.
During the construction period, the Chuquicamata underground project will generate about 6,000 direct jobs and another 18,000 indirect jobs.