Codelco Inaugurates New Rajo Inca Project

Chilean President Sebastían Piñera cuts the ribbon on August 24 at the Rajo Inca inauguration.
In a ceremony headed by President Sebastían Piñera, the Chilean state-owed mining company Codelco inaugurated the construction of the Rajo Inca (Inca Pit) project, which extends the operating life of Codelco’s El Salvador Division. This will increase the mine life of the operation, which is the oldest mining city-camp in the region, by 47 years. The operation will also switch from underground to open-pit mining.

Codelco has placed an investment of more than $1.3 billion for the construction phase, which is expected to be completed within 30 months. Its pit startup is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023. The company’s goal is to increase the annual production of fine copper from 60,000 to 90,000 metric tons (mt) per year.

The new Rajo Inca contains more than 796 million mt of ore reserves, with a competitive grade (0.59% average grade) during the first 10 years of operation. Codelco’s El Salvador Division, located in Chile’s third region, has a 61- year mining history.

As featured in Womp 2021 Vol 09 -