Giant Swiss miner mulls expansion

Swiss multinational diversified natural resource company Glencore expressed its interest in expanding its mining and mineral processing operations in the Philippines, a top official of the country’s Board of Investments revealed on Saturday.

Trade Undersecretary and BoI managing head Ceferino Rodolfo said in a news forum on Saturday that Glencore had a discussion with President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. and Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Glencore, in particular, wants to “get into nickel processing,” Rodolfo said since it sees a market for electric vehicles in the Philippines.

The BoI official also revealed that the major Swiss mining company intends to mine and refine nickel close to its Philippine Associated and Refining Corp. plant.

“But they’re open for other locations that have potential nickel deposits,” Rodolfo said.

The Philippine Associated and Refining Corp., which runs a copper smelting plant in Leyte, is 78 percent owned by Glencore.

Chinese EV manufacturer
In the same news forum, Rodolfo said a Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer also expressed intent to put up an assembly plant in the Philippines.

In particular, the Chinese firm that Rodolfo described as the “largest electric vehicle producer in the world” intends to assemble electric cars here.
“We are already looking for a location,” Rodolfo said.

The BoI chief added that three electric car projects would be launched in the country through a partnership between Chinese and Filipino businesses.

Rodolfo said the partnership is spending P25 billion on building “charging stations, running an electric vehicle leasing program, and operating transport network vehicle service.”

In addition to bringing 20,000 electric vehicles into the nation for leasing and TNVS operations, it will also construct 1,000 electric vehicle charging stations.

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