Paul Carrillo-Maldonado, Karla Arias, Wladimir Zanoni, Zoe Cruz (2023) – Local socioeconomic impacts of large-scale mining projects in Ecuador: The case of Fruta del Norte

This study examines the causal effects of the large-scale mining project Fruta del Norte on the socioeconomic outcomes of the Yantzaza canton (municipality), where the project is located. We apply the synthetic control methodology with a canton-level database to estimate the dynamic response of economic, education, and health outcomes of this municipality in the period 2007–2019. Our results show a continuous increase in sales and purchases since mineral exploitation began (2016). Moreover, we find a permanent increase in the number of formal job openings in Yantzaza. However, we put in evidence that the rates of elementary and high school dropout. The health variables present mixed results, where the rates of neonatal mortality fall, and teenage pregnancy rise.