Peruvian highway and mining companies suspend dividends, cite COVID-19

Peruvian highway and mining companies suspend dividends, cite COVID-19

Asset Management Capital Markets Corporate & Sovereign Strategy Equity Project & Infrastructure Finance Peru Latin America Coronavirus

Peruvian highway concessionaire Norvial and copper mining company Cerro Verde have suspended scheduled dividend payments, citing the disruptions caused by the spread of the coronavirus, according to securities filings on Monday. 

Norvial said its board of directors decided to revoke a decision made om March 10 to pay dividends until regular service in the public transport sector is reestablished. The company added that it was an extraordinary force majeure measure to guarantee the operation of the Ancón-Huacho-Patilivia highway after the government declared a state of emergency. 

The board of US-based miner Freeport-McMoRan, owner of the Cerro Verde mining operation in Peru, decided to suspend the quarterly cash dividend payments planned for May 1 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cerro Verde, said in the filing.   

"The prudent steps we are taking to address costs and capital spending and preserve a strong liquidity position are necessary to maintain flexibility as we respond to current global economic uncertainties and the sharp decline in copper prices in recent weeks," Freeport-McMoRan CEO Richard C. Adkerson said in the filing.