Peru infrastructure projects to spur 4.8% GDP growth in 2015

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Investment in mining, energy and transport infrastructure projects will spark an economic recovery in Peru next year, after slumping metals prices and declining public and private investment crimped growth in 2014, according to BBVA.

The mining industry will be boosted by the ramp-up of copper mines, such as Chinalco's US$3.5bn Toromocho and Hudbay Minerals' US$1.7bn Constancia mines, while construction work is scheduled to finish on China Minmetals' US$5.1bn Las Bambas deposit and Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold's US$4.6bn expansion of its Cerro Verde mine.

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Peru, which aims to double annual copper output to 2.8Mt/y by 2017, has lined up US$62bn in mining investment projects over the next decade, according to the energy and mines ministry (MEM).

Following the US$900mn extension of line 1 of the Lima metro, work is getting underway on the metro's US$5.8bn line 2 after the 35-year concession was awarded in March.

Energy sector investment, meanwhile, includes the start of construction on the US$3.6bn southern Andean gas pipeline and hydroelectric plants, totaling 2,000MW, according to deputy energy minister Edwin Quintanilla. Plants include Chaglla (US$1.2bn), Cerro del Águila (US$920mn), Cheves (US$400mn) and Quitaracsa (US$200mn). Companies have invested US$1.5bn annually over the past four years, he said.

"We must develop actions to not only consolidate our country's position, but also to spur industrialization," Quintanilla told state news agency Andina.


The drop in metals prices, adverse weather conditions for fishing and agriculture, a slowdown in public spending and ebbing confidence in the business community helped slow growth to an estimated 2.6% in 2014, according to Hugo Perea, chief economist at BBVA Continental.

An economic stimulus package is expected to help spur investment and eliminate bureaucratic delays for mining projects in 2015, Perea said.

"We've seen a slowdown in private investment and consumer demand from families, which resulted in low growth this year," he told Lima-based newspaper Gestión. "We expect that trend to change in the next few months."