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Brazilian regulator looking to beef up battle against illegal mining

Bnamericas Published: Wednesday, October 19, 2022
Brazilian regulator looking to beef up battle against illegal mining

Brazilian mining regulator ANM is holding a public consultation to prepare a new framework to improve the authority's battle against illegal mining activity

The new framework will support the authority's efforts to exercise more effective control of money laundering practices carried out using precious stones and metals, especially gold, the regulator said in a release.

The public consultation will be open until November 7. 

The ANM's efforts to identify these illegal practices will be supported by the government's financial supervisory council, the COAF.

The watchdog is stepping up its endeavors as illegal gold mining in Brazil is soaring. According to a recent study published by NGO Instituto Escolhas, a total of 52.8t of the precious metal was produced from clandestine operations last year, up 25% compared with 2020.

Most illegal gold production in the nation takes place in remote areas of the Amazon rainforest that are difficult to access and where it is very hard for authorities to carry out the necessary actions, particularly since government agencies have been downsized. 

Experts have therefore proposed the implementation of a traceability system in the mining supply chain. The absence of such a system facilitates illegal activities, which can have serious impacts on communities and the environment.

Illegal gold mining is also a problem for major miners, as they are exposed to reputational damage. Stakeholders have been evaluating mechanisms to track national gold production to increase transparency in the industry.

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