After months of union talks, San Rafael mine in Mexico to reopen

San Rafael mine. (Image courtesy of Americas Gold and Silver Corporation)

The San Rafael mine in northern Mexico operated by Canada’s Americas Gold and Silver Corp will reopen following months of talks with the country’s main mining union, the economy ministry said on Tuesday.

San Rafael primarily produces silver, zinc and lead in the town of Cosala in Sinaloa state, and the company has said in the past that it was the target of an illegal blockade for over a year in addition to extortion attempts.

Last month, Mexcian President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador told reporters a deal would soon be reached to reopen the mine.

The economy ministry said government authorities had facilitated talks for months to end the dispute.

“The parties have reached an agreement that solves the conflict that had kept the mine closed,” the economy ministry said in a statement.

It added that security and hygiene inspections will be carried out by government officials ahead of the mine restarting operations, but did not specify when the checks would take place.

“The Company is eager to get the operation ramped-up for all to benefit from the current strong silver, zinc and lead prices,” Americas Gold and Silver Chief Executive Officer Darren Blasutti said in a statement on Wednesday.

The company said mining silver-rich areas of the Cosala operations is expected to significantly increase silver production to over 2.5 million ounces per annum in the years following the restart.

(By Sharay Angulo, David Alire Garcia and Arunima Kumar; Editing by Chris Reese and Rashmi Aich)


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