The Peruvian military government nationalised the United States - owned Cerro de Pasco Mining Corporation in lima on Tuesday (1 January).
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Background: The Peruvian military government nationalised the United States - owned Cerro de Pasco Mining Corporation in lima on Tuesday (1 January).
The state took over all Cerro's assets and property, estimated to be worth 145 million dollars (58 million pounds sterling), including its Peruvian headquarters and six mines in the Andes Mountains.
Nationalisation of the company, Peru's biggest mining complex and ??? of the largest in South America, was confirmed on Sunday (30 December) in a decrees signed by President Juan Velasco and his fifteen ministers. No mention was made of the possibility of payment for the Corporation's installations.
In a nationwide broadcast, President Velasco denounced Cerro as "the most faithful symbol of the imperialist presence in Peru" and said its takeover was an occasion for rejoicing by Peruvians.
Cerro last year produced copper, lead, bismuth, gold and silver and other minor metals worth 225 million dollars (90 million pounds sterling), accounting for 35 percent of Peru's mineral production. The company, which had been active in Peru since 1902, will be replaced by a new branch of the State Mining Corporation known as Centrominperu.
The takeover means that the Peruvian state now controls about 50-percent of the country's mining industry -- one of its main export earners.