Mining royalty bill passed by Chile’s senate, headed to lower chamber for final vote
Chile's senate approved a mining royalty bill that would raise taxes on large copper producers. The bill was sent to the lower chamber for a final vote that could come in mid May.
Reuters reported that Chile’s government said it reached an agreement with senators to cut the top tax rate to 46.5 percent from 47 percent for companies that produce more than 80 kt (88,000 st) of fine copper a year, and 45.5 percent for production in the 50 kt – 80 kt (55,000-88,000 st) range.
The bill had initially proposed a ceiling of 50 percent, but this was brought down repeatedly amid legislative debate and criticism from the mining industry.
The bill is part of the government's wider plan to overhaul the country's tax system, a key part of which was shelved by Congress in March.
The royalty bill also establishes a 1 percent ad valorem tax on copper sales from companies whose sales exceed 50 kt (55,000 st) of fine copper, as well as a tax ranging from 8 to 26 percent, depending on the miner's operating margin.
Chile's National Mining Society, known by its Spanish initials Sonami, issued a statement saying that even with the adjustments to the original proposal, the bill's total tax burden for the sector remains higher than in competing countries.