Big mining firms told: ‘Shape up’


Incoming President Rodrigo Duterte has warned big mining companies to shape up, accusing them of destroying the environment.

In his speech at his thanksgiving party in Davao City on Saturday evening, Duterte said big mining firms, particularly in Surigao del Norte in southern Philippines, have to stop the destruction.

“The problem with big mining companies is they are destroying the soil of our country… It has to stop,” he added.

“The mining people must shape up. Most of what you do today, especially in Surigao [del Norte], is dig holes. [You] are destroying Mindanao,” the country’s next leader said.

Duterte said only the big mining interests from Manila are benefiting from mining and the small ones in Mindanao are at the losing end.

“Ang masakit, pati mga [What hurts, is that even the] Moro people, they are being pushed over to the marginal side of business. This must change,” according to him.

As an alternative, Duterte said he will have all Filipino mining workers organized into a cooperative.

He added that people from Mindanao would be given priority.

“Mauuna muna ang mga taga-Mindanao na mahihirap [The poor of Mindanao will be given the priority],” Duterte said.

“We will support them and give them instructions on how not to end up spoiling the land,” he added.


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  1. ferdinand naboye on

    it is time to shape up the mining industry so that the local people will get their constitutional share and protection. we must do responsible and equitable mining in order to benifit the local people and also give the proper share to the people who help develop the industry in partnership with the local community. Kindly take a look at the gold miners in the government agencies especially when poor people goes to applyt for permits

  2. Justatourist on

    Not only is the environment and the landscape destroyed, but it does not bring anything to the “normal” Filipinos. No additional jobs and no revenues. The ore is directly loaded on cargo ships waiting in Hinuatan Passage and these cargo ships are mostly flagged in the PRC. It is anybody’s guess where they are headed to…

    Mindanao is being looted without any benefit for its inhabitants whatsoever. Only the very few benefit from it.
    Urgent investment and work is needed in the Filipino infrastructure so that the ore can be processed locally to provide jobs and revenues at the local level.

    This is a major and utmost important task for the new government.