Overview of Philippines’ Mining Industry

Capital Manila
Largest city Quezon City
Official languages Filipino
Recognised regional languages 19 languages
Optional languagesb Spanish
Ethnic groups(2010) 33.8% Visayan
27.7% Tagalog
9.8% Ilocano
6.8% Bicolano
5.1% Moro
3.1% Kapampangan
1.7% Igorot
1.4% Pangasinense
1.2% Chinese
1.1% Zamboangueño
1.1% Korean
6.8% others
Religion Christianity • Islam •Philippine religion •Buddhism
Demonym Filipino (masculine)
Filipina (feminine)
Pinoy (colloquial masculine)
Pinay (colloquial feminine)
Philippine (English)
Government Unitary presidentialconstitutional republic
President Benigno S. Aquino III
Vice President Jejomar Binay
Senate President Franklin Drilon
House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr.
Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno
Legislature Congress
Upper house Senate
Lower house House of Representatives
Total 300,000 km2 (73rd)
115,831 sq mi
2015 estimate 102,771,300 (12th)
GDP (PPP) 2016 estimate
Total $811.726 billion
Per capita $7,846
GDP (nominal) 2016 estimate
Total $369.188 billion
Per capita $3,568
Currency Peso (Filipino: piso) (₱)(PHP)


  • The Philippines is endowed with US$ 1.4 trillion in mineral reserves, including gold, copper, nickel, aluminum, and chromite. The mining potential is one of largest in the world; being second in in gold and third in copper resources. The country is also ranked top five in the world for overall mineral reserves, although less than 2% has received mining permits.
  • The Government has proposed to significantly raise taxes on the mining industry, and with national elections to be held in May 2016, the industry is waiting to see what the next administration’s policy will be when it comes to minerals development.
  • There is discussion to declare some jurisdictions as “mining-free” zones, both through local ordinances and national law.
  • The Philippine mining industry is promoting the passage of a rational and competitive mining fiscal regime that gives the government a fair share in mining revenues. It would allow for inclusive growth in host communities, and give investors security and allows them a fair and reasonable return on their investments.


Number of Existing Mines
18 Nickel mines
5 Gold mines
4 Copper mines (with gold silver & zinc)
3 Chromite mines
1 Magnetite mine
1 Nickel Processing Plant
1 Copper Processing Plant
2000+ Sand and gravel, and other non – metallic small-scale mines
Main Mining Companies
Atlas Consolidated Mining Carmen Copper, Mine
Philex Mining, Padcal Mine Operation & Boyongan Copper, Gold
Lepanto Consolidated Moning Co. Mankayan Gold
Nickel Asia Corporation, Rio Tuba, and Cagdianao Nickel
Benguet Corporation, Acupan Gold and Sta Cruz Nickel
Filminera/CGA Mining Masbate Gold Project;
Oceanagold, Didipio Copper-Gold Mine
Sagittarius Mines Inc. Tampakan Copper-Gold Project
Gold Fields/Lepanto Far Southeast Copper-Gold Project
Atro Mining Intex/Mindoro Nickel Nickel laterite, rare earths
Philsaga Mining, Co-O Gold Project
Asiacicus Management Corp Pujada Nickel Project
TVI Resources Ltd. Balabag Polymetallic Project
Nadecor, Kingking Copper Project
FCF Minerals, Runruno Gold Project
Pacific Nickel Philippines Inc. Nickel Project
B2Gold/Filminera Resources Corp. Gold


  • The Philippines is a stable democracy, English speaking, with a long history of mining and relationships with Canadian engineering and supply companies.
  • The economy is fundamentally sound with developed mining laws.
  • The Philippine mining industry has purchased from Canadian suppliers for more than 30 years and there is a great respect for Canadian expertise.
  • It’s critical to develop a local presence at an early stage. In some cases the solution is to find a regional partner to service a broader market area if they are experienced in several markets.
  • Always understand who the key EDC player is in the region you are expanding into. EDC offers guidance for Canadian mining suppliers and also major funding for mining companies on their new projects. Get you value into the equation as EDC spends Canadian dollars.
  • The Canadian Trade Commission Service is critical to building and implementing your strategy into a new market. Always introduce yourself to the TCS before doing business in a new country.


  • The mining Industry has objected to draft legislation which levy’s an inordinately high tax rate that would make the country uncompetitive for foreign investments.
  • The government is proposing a ban on the export of unprocessed mineral ores similar to many other emerging countries.
  • The relatively high power cost and lack of power may make minerals processing uneconomical when compared to countries such as Indonesia.
  • The generally lower quality of nickel ore, coupled with the lower overall ore resources make the construction of expensive ferronickel or electric arc furnaces unfeasible.
  • The lower quality of locally produced coal and the non-availability of local coking coal is an obstacle whereas Indonesia has large quantities of both.
  • There is considerable illegal mining in some jurisdictions as local governments wield significant power including political insurgencies in Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago.
  • Investors are in a wait and see posture as Mining free zones being proposed, These proposed “no-go” zones would enlarge the areas closed to mining applications.

Comments are closed.