Bancarization Law: Colombian Mining Sector
Law 2177 of 2021 (the “Law“), issued on December 30, 2021, establishes the conditions to guarantee access to financial products and services offered by entities supervised by the Financial Superintendence of Colombia and/or by the Superintendence of Solidarity Economy (the “Entities“) to mining chain actors. These provisions are applicable to mining owners, authorized mining exploiters, mineral traders, mineral benefit plants, miners in the process of formalization and legalization and special service providers, such as those performing exploration, construction and assembly, exploitation, closure and abandonment of mines (the “Actors“).
Actors must adopt and implement, in accordance with existing regulations, risk management measures and/or minimum measures aimed at establishing standards of information transparency, regulatory compliance, prevention of money laundering and financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and business ethics practices. In any case, per the Law’s provisions, the National Government shall issue the corresponding regulations.
Per the Law’s provisions, Entities will provide the Actors with their services and products as long as they comply with the risk analysis established by each entity and the applicable regulations. Entities may grant the Actors mortgage loans, free investment loans, and housing leasing with preferential interest rates. Likewise, Entities may offer savings accounts, checking accounts, credit cards, and different financial services with special benefits.
Whenever the Entities require information from the mining sector for the provision of financial products and services, the mining authority must make available the legal, technical, or financial information requested by the Entities. Provided that prior and express authorization from the holder thereof is granted.
The Entities may only deny the provision of their services or products for objective reasons. To belong to the mining sector shall not be considered as an objective reason. The reasons for rejection must be duly informed to the applicant of the financial products and/or services.
In the event of rejection of the financial products or/and services’ application, the applicant shall have the right to have Banco Agrario rendering the service and access to financial products. Banco Agrario will previously verify that the applicant has not incurred in bad faith, contumacy, irregular conduct, or bad practices in the provision of banking services.
Furthermore, those who are denied from financial products for the channeling of payments shall be entitled to the recognition of such payments as costs, deductions, or deductible taxes.
Author: Ana María Sandoval I [email protected] I Natural Resources – Mining