Liliam F. Yoshikawa and Camila de Carli Rosellini

 

Like other areas in the infrastructure segment, the mining sector, especially the Brazilian one, has undergone regulatory changes to attract more investments and to correct certain gaps related to mining practices and socio-environmental concerns.

 

Even in the midst of the covid-19 pandemic, the Mining and Development Program (PMD) was launched, which sought to define the federal government's agenda for the mining sector in the period from 2020 to 2023, aiming at the country's sustainable development in its socioeconomic bases and environmental.

 

In response to the government's intention to attract investments to Brazilian mining, the PMD continued a series of regulations already issued to revitalize the sector, such as the reform of the mining code. Occurred in 2018, through the publication of Decree No. 9.406 / 18, the reform brought stricter environmental rules on the obligation to close the mine and recover degraded areas, tightened the rule for counting the mineral research term and its hypotheses for extension , encouraged the economic use of tailings and mining waste and systematized the electronic auction to make areas available.

 

In the same vein, the Mining Plan presented by the Collegiate Directorate of the National Mining Agency (ANM), an organ linked to the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME), in May 2020 proposed the revision of several resolutions and ordinances to the mining organ, with the objective of reducing the bureaucracy of mineral legislation and achieving an improvement in the business environment, including in response to the damage caused to the mineral sector by the pandemic.

 

Mining Plan 2020

Action

Regulations / Procedures

Main aspects

Delegation of competencies from the ANM Collegiate Board

ANM Resolution No. 31/20 and ANM Resolution No. 48/20

ANM Collegiate Board: maintenance of hierarchical resources, expiry and Lavra Ordinance.

Delegation of other acts to regional superintendencies and managements.

Recycled resin for bottling mineral water

ANM Resolution 34/20, which changes item 4.12 of Technical Standard No. 001/09, approved by the Ordinance of the then National Department of Mineral Production (DNPM) No. 374/09

Diversification of alternative sources of raw material for bottling mineral water based on recycled resin to contribute to increasing environmental sustainability.

Spin-off, merger and incorporation

ANM Resolution No. 33/20, which alters art. 246 of DNPM Ordinance No. 155/2016

Authorization for mining to occur during the partial or total transfer process.

Modernization of user guide procedures

ANM Resolution No. 37/20, which amends articles 102 to 122 of DNPM Ordinance No. 155/16

Streamlined analysis and response times for User Guide requirements.

Modernization of approval procedures for final research report

Provision for amendment to DNPM Ordinance No. 155/16

Speeding up the response time for mining concession requirements through measures in the analysis rite and procedures in the approval of the final research reports.

Regularization of Law No. 13,975 / 2020 - Licensing Regime

ANM Resolution 49/20, which amends articles 42 and 43 of DNPM Ordinance 155/16

The objective was to provide greater agility to analyzes whose substances are covered by Law No. 13.975 / 20.

Resolution of confidentiality of process information

Pending

Conducting a public consultation to review the resolution of the requirements and criteria for confidentiality of information contained in the ANM processes.

Resolution for digitization of processes under the terms of the legislation

Pending

It aims to digitize processes and prepare a resolution for regulating the digitization of processes and documents.

Public consultation of areas availability notice

ANM Public Consultation No. 02/20

The Lavra Plan provided for public consultation on the first area availability notice. However, in addition to the public consultation, ANM's 1st and 2nd rounds of area availability were also made available.

Financial guarantees

ANM Public Consultation No. 03/20

It aims to create a tool that allows financial guarantee based on mining titles through regulatory decree.

Application for online research in free area

Electronic Application for Mineral Research (Repem) (https://www.gov.br/anm/pt-br/assuntos/acesso-a-sistemas/requerimento-de-pesquisa)

Enables the online search application process to be carried out in free areas within 31 days.

 

After the official launch of the PMD, Bill No. 550/19 of the Federal Senate was approved, which was pending before the Chamber of Deputies and proposed amendment of the National Dam Safety Policy, aiming to increase control over dam safety. The project was converted into Federal Law No. 14,066 / 20.

 

In addition to adapting the legislation on dam safety to the growing socio-environmental concern, mainly with a focus on disaster prevention, Law No. 14.066 / 20 also sought to update the legislative framework in relation to the new technologies developed.

 

In this sense, Law No. 14.066 / 20 follows the guidelines of the PMD and is closely related to some of the program's goals aimed at socioeconomic and environmental commitment in mining, specifically with the goal of improving parameters for dam safety, its regulation, control, inspection, monitoring and responsibilities (plan 3.2, goal G).

 

Another recent legislative innovation refers to ANM Resolution No. 32, which changed the rules for the inspection and safety of dams in the country, with changes in the elaboration of the flood map and in the deadlines for presenting the map based on the DPA (Potential Associated Damage) of each dam, automatic elevation of the dam risk category to “high” in cases specified in the resolution, among other measures to increasingly improve the inspection and safety of mining dams.

 

In accordance with the objective of promoting the sector and also with the actions established by the Lavra Plan, after a long period of speculation and discussion, in September 2020, the ANM also started the process of making areas available, offering 502 units that were in the research application or authorization phase.

 

The second round, which took place in December last year, offered 7,027 areas, 69% of which were for mineral research purposes and the others for mining concessions. The period of the last public offering will end on March 1, 2021. If any area in availability receives more than one expression of interest, the electronic auction will take place from March 8 to 15.

 

In addition to the innovations already described in the sector, ANM collected, between November 27 and January 26, contributions to a new regulation proposal to discipline the procedures for the use of waste and tailings. The objective is to improve and update mineral legislation, due to the influence of new technologies and global trends in the sector, and to rationalize the use of deposits.

 

In another initiative that should have great repercussion in the sector, the President of the Republic forwarded 35 bills to the National Congress this month that he considers a priority for the country, among them the controversial proposal to regulate mining activities in indigenous lands, which must be the subject of many discussions.

 

All actions reveal a more dynamic mining sector, in search of technological innovations and initiatives that foster the attraction and renewal of investments and increase the legal security of mineral and other related activities. Both the Mining and Development Program and the recent legislative innovations of MME, ANM and other environmental agencies intend to boost advances in the sector, one of the most important to leverage the Brazilian economy.