Toronto (March 4, 2020) – One day after the Brazilian Mining Association (IBRAM) and Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) signed a historic cooperation deal to propel the mining industry in Brazil, executives and specialists discussed the challenges of raising capital tied to environmental social governance (ESG) goals. The topic was covered at The Brazilian Mineral Exploration & Mining Industry Projects and Opportunities, a panel coordinated by the Brazil-Canada Chamber of Commerce (BCCC) at PDAC 2020.
According to IBRAM Board of Directors President Wilson Brumer, Brazilian mining companies need to expand the idea of sustainability to incorporate social issues. “Sustainability is no longer just related to environmental issues but also must include stakeholder needs.”
Brumer noted that while Brazil has enormous potential for developing mineral exploration programs, Brazilian mining sector is also reliant on the global market, where international sustainability standards are the norm. He pointed out that following ESG standards, such as managing water resources, reducing energy consumption, and promoting diversity, will determine the success of mining companies in raising capital. “If behaviours are not changed, projects will fail to attract banks and investors.”
Cory McPhee, VP Corporate Affairs, Communications & Sustainability at Vale Base Metals, stressed the growing interest in ESG credentials in the capital markets over the last two years, as well as the importance of an adequate sustainability impact data in the capital raising process. “Projects cannot have ESG gap analysis as it is a critical value to investors making decisions.”
Kinross VP Safety and Sustainability, Ed Opitz, also mentioned the value of data transparency with concern to sustainable finance. “ESG projects should show data in terms of improvement for human well-being,” he said, adding that gold mining can provide the host country with up 80% value creation in terms of jobs, local economy growth, and supporting local communities.
Justine Hendricks, Senior VP Sustainable Business and Enablement at EDC (Export Development Canada), said that the agency also value leadership when looking at ESG projects. “Applicants should be very active in helping to grow ESG practices.”
Rafael Bemke, CEO at Proactiva Results and panel moderator, agreed with Hendricks and added that companies in Brazil should take a leadership role with respect to ESG practices. “Today the green agenda in Brazil is triggered by the BNDES (Brazilian Development Bank).”
Arjun Bhalla, Senior Operations Officer at IFC-World Bank, said that it is crucial for the bank to compare companies with environmental and social performance. “Investments in social and environmental initiatives are not only good for marketing, but also present a strong business case.”
About PDAC 2020 – The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) 2020 Convention is the world’s premier mineral exploration and mining event. PDAC is the leading voice of the mineral exploration with over 7,500 members around the world. PDAC 2020 will take place March 1-4 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto, Canada marking its 88th year.
For more information, visit: www.adimb.org.br.