A Chilean appeals court has granted a victory to the $3.9 billion copper-gold El Morro project, a 70:30 joint venture between Canadian miners Goldcorp Inc. and New Gold Inc., ruling against an injunction by local indigenous communities. In Q4, Copiapó District III court ordered a operation suspension pending review of the challenge to an environmental permit.

Opponents maintained the permit violated rights — including local consultation under the International Labor Organization (ILO) convention 169. The court, however, said the community members failed to inform proper authorities in a timely fashion, and dismissed illegality issues. A legal representative of the local population promised an appeal to the supreme court in Santiago.

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