Peru is a country with a vocation in mining owed to the important deposits that it possesses and because mining has already played an important role. It was already an activity known before the conquest when alloys of copper, iron and tin were acquired in addition to precious metals, especially gold.

The construction of the railways, from 1870, marked the beginning of a mining reactivation: the School of Engineers was created; the Mining Register was made, and Antonio Raimondi made an inventory of mineral resources.

During the First World Was the highest production values were reached, with severe decline from 1930. In 1950 the Second Mining Code was promulgated and in the 60's high incomes were achieved. In the 1970s, the Mining Law (No. 18 880) was enacted and part of the sector was nationalised.

During the colonial period the production of silver was an important activity and, in part, the economic base of the Viceroyalty of Peru. With independence this activity declined. From 1840 there was a resurgence with the explotation of island guano and saltpeter.


There is no official data regarding the production of gold from small-scale mining and Peruvian artisanal mining, but it is estimated that gold production totals approximately 40 tons per year.

  • Informal miner (Legislative Decrees N° 1336): Mining activity carried out in areas not prohibited by a person, natural or jurisdiction, that is registered in the Integral Registry of Mining Formalisation.
  • Illegal miner (Legislative Decrees N° 1105): Includes mining activities that are carried out without complying with the requirements of the business, technical, social and environmental standards that govern such activities and that are located in unauthorised areas.
  • Formal miner (Legislative Decrees N° 1336): Activity exercised by a person, natural or legal, that has authorisation to start or restart activities.

150.000 thousand people approximately.

Yes, in Peru there are three formalisation processes: the ordinary, the extraordinary and the comprehensive formalisation.

  • The budget limitation and insufficient economic resources dedicated from the government for formalisation.
  • Absence of incentive schemes that stimulate formalisation processes.
  • Absence of supply chain, there is no incentive to improve the welfare of mining communities.
  • The scarce state infrastructure to address the processes, requierements and needs of stakeholders.