Asarco Addresses U.S. Cleanup Obligations

Date: August 29, 2002

Source: News Room

Asarco Inc., a U.S. unit of copper miner Grupo Mexico SA (Mexico: GMEXICOB.MX), has sent the U.S. Department of Justice a proposal addressing its environmental clean-up obligations at numerous locations used during more than a century of mining and smelting metals. The company said that the proposal was also a response to the government's legal objection last month to the financially strapped 103-year-old company's plan to sell its shares in Southern Peru Copper Corp. to intermediate parent Americas Mining Group to reduce its own massive debt load. The government objected to the sale because it claimed the sale amount was "significantly below" the stock's fair market value. The Justice Department claims that Asarco owes the United States hundreds of millions of dollars for liabilities in at least 18 states, but Asarco has said it is unable to meet its cleanup obligations.

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