The MAATE has set a maximum period for the environmental regularization of the mining sector

March 25th, 2022

By memorandum number MERNNR-SMAPM-2022-0059-ME of March 23, 2022, the Undersecretary of Artisanal Mining and Small Mining of the Ministry of Energy and Non-Renewable Natural Resources (hereinafter the “MERNNR”) informed the its zonal coordinators of circular number MAAE-DNCA-2022-0008-C dated February 19, 2022  (hereinafter the “Circular”) signed by the Director of Environmental Regulations and Control of the Ministry of Environment, Water and Transition Ecology (hereinafter the “MAATE”), notified to the Chamber of Mining of Ecuador, whose main points are summarized below:

  1. The purpose of the Circular is to inform on the obligation of environmental regularization[1] of “mining concessions, beneficiation plants, artisanal mining permits and free use”.
  • The Circular grants a maximum period of 10 days to “begin with the process of environmental regularization, whose verifiable means of the beginning of the process in the Single System of Environmental Information (SUIA), must be presented to the Directorate of Environmental Regularization, of this Ministerial Unit”.
  • The Circular mentions that “the regularization process must comply with any administrative act that is stipulated in the legal framework, to carry out mining activities.”[2]
  • Additionally, the Circular indicates that for the title holders of “mining of construction materials, artisanal mining of metallic and non-metallic, and non-metallic mining (small mining), must send their verifiable documents to the Zonal Directorates of this Unit“.

Having been notified by email dated 24 March 2022 by the MERNNR, the 10-day period must be counted from that date.

[1] Articles 172 of the Organic Code of the Environment and 420 of its regulations.

[2] Article 26, Mining Law.




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