06 October 2009

Chile Senate Approves $1 Billion Funding for Codelco

By Nathan Gill and Sebastian Boyd
Oct. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Chile’s Senate approved a bill to provide $1 billion in financing for Codelco, the world’s largest copper producer.

The vote was 21-to-six with one abstention in the Senate, which acted after the lower house passed the bill earlier today, according to a statement on the Senate Web site. Chilean President Michelle Bachelet must sign the bill for it to become law.

The financing is part of a corporate governance law that aims to improve transparency and efficiency at the state-owned company. The new law would bring Codelco under the supervision of Chile’s securities regulator and removes ministers from its board, according to a copy of the law posted on the lower house of Congress’s Web site.

Codelco is investing $11 billion to revamp aging mines and boost output after strikes and other interruptions curbed production in 2008. The company owns almost a fifth of the world’s copper reserves.