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Mining industry urged to collaborate more with community sector

Deloitte’s 2018 trends report finds mining industry can thrive if it focuses on community engagement

A new report recommends the mining industry renews its focus by working closely with community sectors on pressing public concerns.

Deloitte’s 2018 ‘Tracking the Trends’ report indicates mining companies are operating under a largely negative perception. The analysis suggests that by re-engaging with communities, the industry can begin to make significant social changes.

Americas Mining leader in Deloitte Canada, Glenn Ives, said the mining company would have to adapt to change, adding: “This is more about enhancing efficiencies.”

“As the mining industry’s value proposition is increasingly called into question, mining companies are beginning to see that they cannot succeed into the future unless they change the way they operate,” Ives said in the report.

The report suggests the social initiatives the mining sector has undertaken in the past have failed to deliver on the intended results, leaving the industry to realise that their traditional approaches to community relations must change.

“If mining companies truly hope to change for the better, they must do more than create stakeholder maps in various markets where they operate to identify key decision makers and potential detractors,” the report read.

Deloitte’s suggests partnering with industry and trade groups to gain an increased understanding of the political damage and build targeted relationships with specific entities, community leaders and NGOs to uncover pressing local needs.

Australian National Mining Leader, Ian Sanders, told Australian Mining that mining companies are starting to focus more on the social impact they are making on stakeholders.

“Organisations are making sure that they are clearly articulating how they are trying to impact not only the local communities in which they operate but working more closely with them,” Sanders said.

The report mentioned many governments of resource-rich countries have put pressure on the mining industry to expand local employment, increase tax revenues and meet community demands for improved environmental protection.

Mining Leader from Deloitte Peru, Karla Velasquez, said: “To address community concerns around resource competition, it’s time for minors to improve their water management by rethinking their production processes and partnering with technology companies to implement real-time water monitoring solutions.

Global Leader for Mining, Philip Hopwood, adds that the mining company will continue to see a rapid change against a backdrop of decreasing assets and that to thrive, companies must rethink the traditional mining model.

“Change is coming and mining companies must find a way to remain relevant.”

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