The Ministry of Mining together with the Ministry of Economy of the Nation announced positive numbers regarding mining exploitation in the country. As they pointed out, between 2020 and the present, investment announcements have been made for USD 11,318 million. This amount is broken down into: USD 4,853 million for copper operations, USD 5,141 million for lithium; USD 1,293 million of gold; USD 30 million of silver while the rest is divided between potassium and other minerals.
On the other hand, it was reported that the provinces that led the investment ranking were San Juan (USD 5,428 million) for the production of copper and gold; jump (USD 3,158 million) lithium, copper and gold; and Catamarca (USD 2,311 million) copper and gold. In fourth place was Jujuy (USD 420 million) followed by Buenos Aires (USD 250 million) and Mendoza (USD 1 million). Two lithium projects are expected to start up this year and the respective expansions of the two projects that are currently underway (Livent in Catamarca and Sales de Jujuy in Jujuy) will be completed.
In February 2023, Argentina set a new historical record in lithium exports for this month, reaching USD 58 million, which implied a year-on-year growth in foreign sales of 85%. Said growth, together with January, allowed mineral exports to total USD 140 million in the first two months of the year, a variation of 166% compared to the same period of the previous year. Regarding the quantities exported, in the accumulated so far this year they exhibited a rise of 31%.
The start-up of the two projects and the expansion of the aforementioned, will allow this year (2023) to enter 6 billion dollars only from mining, this will be the result of the income of 2 billion dollars of fresh investment, and an increase in exports that will reach USD 4 billion dollars.
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The latest figures are in line with the upward trend of Argentine mining exports. In 2022 they had the best result since 2012, reaching USD 3,857 million. Regarding lithium, foreign sales were USD 696 million, with a growth of 234% year-on-year (in 2021 lithium exports were USD 208 million) and representing 18% of total mining exports.