Mining royalties plunge as nickel prices fall
Several nickel producers posted lower H1 earnings because of the drop in metal prices

A DAY IN THE MINE. Workers carry load on their heads as they head out to start their workday at the Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation. Photo by Rick Rocamora

MANILA, Philippines – Royalties from mining firms operating in government-controlled mineral reservation sites fell 18% to P577.55 million in the first half of 2013 from P707.4 million in the same period of 2012.

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) attributed the plunge to the drop in nickel prices.

“The drop in collections can be attributed to lower nickel prices for the period,” said MGB Director Leo Jasareno.

Royalties are expected to reach P1.17 billion by yearend. In 2012, the government collected P1.57 billion in royalties.

As stipulated in the Mining Act of 1995, MGB gets 10% of the collections. The 90% goes to the national government and local government units hosting the mineral reservation sites.

Read: $12-B mining projects on hold amid revenue-sharing issues

These sites are situated in Zambales (Region III), Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur and Dinagat Islands (Region XIII).

Read: Nickel Asia opens plant in Surigao del Norte

Nickel producers such as Nickel Asia Corp. posted lower first-half earnings due to lower metal prices. –

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