“It has always been a state resource”

2023-04-21 22:36:09

The Foreign Minister, Alberto van Klaverenreferred to the National Lithium Strategy which was recently introduced by the Government.

in conversation with ThirdThe chancellor He clarified that “it is not a nationalization because that nationalization, if that concept can be used, was done many years ago and is part of our tradition. It has always been a state resource”this after international media reported that the “nationalization” of lithium in Chile had been announced.

“It is a mistake, because lithium has always been a State resource. For the rest, like a lot of minerals in general. That is why we have a system of concessions, because the property of the minerals belongs to the State. In addition to that, all the exploitation of lithium has been done from that concept. So, there is no change in the legal statute at all”, the Secretary of State specified.

According to the “virtuous public-private collaboration” as one of the main axes in the National Lithium Strategy announced by the President Gabriel Boricvan Klaveren stated that “This public-private association is very normal for the exploitation of natural resources, it is not something exceptional nor is it typical of state economies.”

There are very open economies that apply relatively similar schemes, I think of Norway, Netherlandsall countries that also have sought public-private partnershipand with majority participation often by the State, in the exploitation of these resources”, he pointed out.

In this way, he addressed the announcement by the Head of State that the contracts of those who currently have the right to exploit lithium “will be fully respected.” “That is the most important thing, because here you have to distinguish between the deposits that are being exploited and those that are going to be exploited”emphasized the chancellor.

“In the case of deposits that are already in operation, the existing legal framework will be absolutely respected and those who are exploiting will be invited toobviously, to a renegotiation, to the extent that they are available”, he explained.

Finally, The minister stated that “now that the framework is very clarified, obviously we are going to have contact with the different embassiesboth the residents here in Chile and the embassies abroad”.

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