Cerro Verde


Open pit operation

Uchumayo, Arequipa

2,600 masl

19.58% BVN


The Cerro Verde Mine, property of Sociedad Minera Cerro Verde S.A.A. (19.58% BVN), an affiliate of Buenaventura, is located in the District of Uchumayo, Province of Arequipa, Region of Arequipa. It produces copper cathodes, copper concentrate, and molybdenum concentrate. The company currently has the largest copper concentrate complex in the world. It is operated by Freeport McMoRan.

Geology: This is a copper deposit with oxides, secondary sulfides, and primary sulfides. The most abundant copper oxide minerals are brochantite, chrysocolla, malachite, and pitch copper. Chalcocite and covelline are the most significant copper sulfide minerals. Chalcopyrite and molybdenite are the dominant primary sulfides.

Mining: At Cerro Verde, we perform open pit mining, while constantly taking care to monitor our environmental performance and management, the wellbeing of communities near our operations, and the health and safety of each one of our workers and contractors. To obtain our final products, we use the hydrometallurgy (leaching) and concentration processes.

Metallurgy: Hydrometallurgy (crushing and leaching): primary, secondary, and tertiary crushing, agglomeration, heaping, leaching, percolation, storage, extraction, re-extraction, filtering, and electrowinning. Concentration: secondary and tertiary crushing, milling circuit, flotation, remilling and clean-up flotation, thickening, and filtration.

Production and Processing Capacity: With the inauguration of the second concentrating plant, we have increased our processing capacity via flotation from 120,000 MTD to 360,000 MTD, for an annual incremental production of approximately 600 million pounds of copper and 15 million pounds of molybdenum. The leaching plant has a capacity of 40,000 MTD.

Note: As of december 31st of the year indicated.