Darío Barros Izquierdo, General Manager,
ECHEVERRÍA IZQUIERDO MONTAJES INDUSTRIALES
"With a workforce of up to 9,000 workers, we never halted operations and closed the year with historical results where the mining industry represents more than 60% of our revenue."
How was 2021 for Echeverría Izquierdo?
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, 2021 was one of the most successful years of our company. With a workforce of up to 9,000 workers, we never halted operations and closed the year with historical results where the mining industry represents more than 60% of our revenue.
During this year, we continued with the construction of the primary crusher at Quebrada Blanca phase 2 (QB2) project and completed some minor scale projects for BHP and CMP. We also continued with the works in MAPA expansion project of Celulosa Arauco, the largest project in the history of the company. Noteworthy to mention was awarding the construction contracts for two major concentrator plants in the last quarter.
The first one is the Rajo Inca project in Salvador, an emblematic project for Codelco, consisting of the upgrade of the concentrator plant and the thickener’s overhaul. The second one corresponds to the wet area and the truck shop facilities at the Mantoverde project, where we will start work this year. All of this enabled us to end 2021 with an historic backlog, consolidating our leading position in the mining construction and assembly services.
Can you elaborate on Echeverría Izquierdo’s work on the primary crusher at QB2 and at the concentrator plant at the Mantoverde project?
We have been building Teck´s QB2 project since 2019. Its scope includes the primary crusher, two overland conveyors, a stockpile, the reclaim tunnels and a lime plant. This project has been a great success, especially for the implementation of innovative solutions such as the post-tensioning technology.
2022 started with the mobilization of Mantoverde Development project, which includes the wet area and the EPC truck shop. Our team has recently finished up the temporary facilities and are hoping to start building soon. We were hired by Ausenco to work in collaboration with them and Capstone, who recently merged with Mantos Copper. We won the contract for the most critical part of the project: the ball mill and the concentrator plant. This is a very important project for us and we look forward to safely delivering and advancing it throughout 2022 and beyond.
What type of work does Echeverría Izquierdo do for lithium projects?
For four years we were working with one of the world’s top lithium producers in different EPC and construction projects in Chile, in areas such as the pneumatic transport system, solvent extraction plant, thermal evaporation plant and one step and boron removal plant, working directly with the client to interconnect these plants. The lithium process is much more similar to a chemical operation than a traditional copper plant mining process. For this reason, we assembled a strong team of people with previous experience in refineries and pulp and paper plants, both sectors in which Echeverría Izquierdo has extensive experience.
Echeverría Izquierdo has been recognized for six years running by the Chilean Chamber of Construction for workplace health and safety standards. Which factors contributed to this recognition?
Safety is a core value for us, and we are proud of being recognized in the honour roll from the Chilean Chamber of Construction for six years. This is an important achievement, but not trouble free, considering our large workforce, the nature of our services and the challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. A contributor to this recognition is our approach to work with our own people and equipment fleet; we outsource very limited activities, and we work with our own cranes and major lifting equipment. We therefore know their story and maintenance as well as the operator and rigger. We have a centralized Rigging department that has an exhaustive review process to ensure the safe performance of hoisting and rigging activities.
The most important factor is our culture, which we call " the Echeverria Izquierdo Montajes Industriales´ way of work". We take care of our people and we are close to them. We have employees who have been with us for more than 20 years, in both the good and the bad times. We have doubled our team in the last years up to 9,000 employees due to of the large mining and pulp and paper projects. Therefore, training our people in health and safety has been a key priority to us, from management to supervisors, foremen, technicians and workers.