Could you please elaborate on INCIMMET’s experience in the field of mine backfill?

At INCIMMET, we have a long-standing history of providing extensive EPCM services for mine backfill. From the inception of our company, we have been engaged in not just operating the backfill, but also in engineering and constructing plants for the same. An efficient mine backfill system has the potential to accelerate production, which is particularly advantageous in today’s scenario where metal prices are quite high. Moreover, a proper mine backfill system is crucial for achieving optimal productivity at a mine. We, at INCIMMET, possess the expertise to help companies identify the best solutions for their challenges and customize them to suit the specificities of their mine.

Can you provide some details about the standout projects that INCIMMET has executed in Colombia and Peru?

INCIMMET has recently signed a contract with Fura Gems for their La Paz Emerald mine in Colombia. The project has been an interesting experience for us, as it involves mining of gemstones, which is quite different from precious or base metals. This project has motivated us to expand the scope of projects we take on. We are also engaged in vertical development operations for Continental Gold’s Buriticá mine in Colombia, which involves constructing shafts for ore and waste passes.

In Peru, INCIMMET is the sole contractor for Buenaventura’s Orcopampa and Tambomayo projects, where we provide integral solutions such as mine development, mine backfill, rock support, and ore production. Nexa Resources’ Cerro Lindo, which is the largest underground mine in Peru, is another noteworthy project that we have been working on for several years. Additionally, we are undertaking long haul drilling for Nexa and an engineering project for Cori Puno, a gold mining company that has operations in Peru and Colombia.

Do you think the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the implementation of new technologies at mine sites?

As a mining contractor, we need to strike a balance between investing in infrastructure and implementing new technology, as we do not own the mine or invest in IT infrastructure for the entire mine. Although the pandemic has accelerated the willingness to adopt new technologies, it is unlikely that we will achieve industry 4.0 in 2021. At INCIMMET, our innovation strategy is focused on addressing our clients’ short and medium-term needs, while not neglecting the significant long-term trends. We believe this approach can lead to tangible and realistic progress at a mining operation.

As a contractor, how do you ensure safety standards are maintained while working in different mining environments for different clients?

Safety has always been a top priority for INCIMMET, and we have been reinforcing our safety systems and philosophy for many years. We also adapt to the specific needs of each client. However, since we started working with DuPont, we have changed our mindset to work towards a single standard. Although we believed that we were already one of the best contractors when it came to safety, we identified significant room for improvement. Through our efforts over the past three years, we have been able to reduce injuries by 98%. Our commitment to safety was recognized in May 2021, when we won an award for best safety practices in an international contest by ISEM.

What are the benefits of maintaining long-term relationships between contractors and mining companies?

Long-term relationships are not only beneficial for the profitability of the mining contractor, but also for the clients. It takes some time to learn how to optimize each mine, and the efforts put in by the contractor can take some time to show results. Although contractors are anonymous in the quarterly production results of mining companies, they are responsible for at least 50% to 60% of the success in production.

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