Americas Gold and Silver urges Mexican government to reopen mineBy Antonio Trujillo | Fri, 08/13/2021 - 13:10
Canada-based Americas Gold and Silver has asked the Mexican government to take action by helping to resume operations at the San Rafael mine in Cosalá, Sinaloa, highlighting frustrations over their month-old agreement, constant threats and attempted extortions.
Last July, MBN reported that the mining company and the Mexican Ministry of Economy, and the Ministry of the Interior and Labor had reached an agreement to reopen the mine and resume operations after a 17-month stalemate. The agreement came after several sessions of negotiations where all parties, which included President López Obrador, Mexican authorities and community representatives were able to voice their concerns and objectives. At the time, executives from Americas Gold and Silver were confident in the agreement and its long-term effects, largely thanks to the presence of important stakeholders. After the blockade, an increase in silver production is expected to surpass 2.5Moz, resulting from the company benefiting from high prices of the main minerals extracted at the property.
This illegal blockade was supposed to end immediately after signing the agreement, given that the deal provided for immediate possession of the mine favoring Americas, as long as the Mexican Ministry of Labor inspected the safety and operational viability of the property. The inspection was carried out dutifully, finding no industrial risks nor any other dangers to the workers or working conditions.
The company pointed out the illegality of the blockade from the very start by stating that there were never any factors attributable to the company that justified the blockade that started over 18 months ago.
The continued illegal blockade is attributable to the Miners Union Leader Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, as well as other key representatives from the union, which were singled out for failing to uphold the agreement. Moreover, Americas has contacted the Union, to no avail, about increasing the number of workers that were supposed to return to work, following the agreement.
Americas has expressed its intent on a continued dialogue and negotiations with all parties involved, in order to appease all possible present and future issues, once operations have been resumed, and not before.
The company updates a detailed timeline of events surrounding the blockade at the mine. The blockade began in 2020 with a group of labor union-related representatives. Americas expresses its willingness to negotiate any demands, nevertheless, none were existent nor notified when the conflict began.