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Philippines is one of the few countries in the world richly blessed with mineral resources. It has large mineral reserves that are potent tools for economic development most especially when mined responsibly. Benefits derived from mining must balance its costs on the country, people and the environment, however, there are people who do not observe and consider this.

Like in Sta. Cruz, Zambales, Mayor Luisito Marty seemingly misleading the public on his illegal activities in the area. He actually wanted not to allow anybody to establish ports integral for nickel mining operation so that anyone who needs one will be forced to use his ‘favored’ port which will benefit him by commanding a very high price. This merely showed an abuse of authority and oppression.

It is a good thing that the administration monitors such kind of activity. This shows how serious they are in mining industry especially as President Benigno Aquino III defended the new mining policy he signed, saying it was for the benefit of the Philippines. Also, it is important to consider that the industry is a good foreign investments earner, particularly now that there are news reports proving that there is a strong demand for nickel. Zambales, being one of the good sites for nickel mining, should be protected and monitored.  Further research showed that mining industry had higher foreign direct investments or FDIs relative to agriculture and services sectors over the past decade. On the average, mining had 65.95% FDI’s in comparison to 0.59% and 15.85% FDIs of agriculture and services sectors respectively.

Minerals are non-renewable resources. Therefore, mining operations should be limited because overutilization of resources would actually lead to the depletion of resources that would eventually incur an increase in cost of production which is associated with productivity decline. Yes, Philippines is unique when it comes to mineral deposits. But then, minerals have no significant value if left underground, however they should be mined responsibly.

Cabangbang, Grace Key
De Luna, Francis Noah
Rimando, Larissa

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