Grupo México

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Grupo México S.A.B. de C.V.
Type Sociedad Anónima Bursátil de Capital Variable
Traded as BMVGMEXICO B
Industry Mining, Logistics
Founded 1978
Headquarters Mexico City, México
Key people Germán Larrea Mota-Velasco, (Chairman & CEO)
Products Iron Ore, Copper, Railway transport
Revenue Decrease US$ 10.1 billion (2012) [1]
Net income Decrease US$ 2.3 billion (2012) [1]
Employees 500
Website www.gmexico.com

Grupo México is the largest mining corporation in Mexico and the third largest copper producer in the world through ASARCO.

Ferrocarril Mexicano (Ferromex), the company's rail transport division, operates the nation's largest rail fleet.

History[edit]

The company was founded by Raul Antonio Escobedo and Larrea Mota Velasco in 1978. After the government of Carlos Salinas declared the state mining company bankrupt, Larrea purchased key Mexican copper mines in Cananea and Nacozari (cities in the state of Sonora). He also purchased numerous other mining sites, including coal mines in the state of Coahuila. By 2000, Grupo México was responsible for 87.5 percent of Mexico's copper production and is the world's third-largest copper producer in the world.[1]

Grupo México has been in continual conflict with Local 65, the Cananea branch of the Mexican Mine Workers' Union (SNTMMSRM). During miners' strikes in January 2003 and October 2004, Grupo México responded with threats to close the Cananea mines. [2]

In 2004, Grupo México has also purchased a controlling interest in the Southern Peru Copper Corporation. [3] Grupo Mexico acquired 54.2% equity interest in Southern Peru Copper Corporation from ASARCO LLC, a mining company operating in the United States. The SPCC equity sale is subject to a litigation between Grupo Mexico and ASARCO pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas under District Court Judge Andrew Hanen. As of September 2009, ASARCO was the focus of a bidding war begun in May 2008 between its own parent company Grupo México and India-based Sterlite Industries. On August 31, 2009, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Richard Schmidt recommended that U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen accept Grupo México's $2.5 billion bid for ASARCO as it prepares to come out of bankruptcy.

Pollution and environmental issues[edit]

Cases in the US through ASARCO[edit]

These talls smokestacks at Asarco's El Paso Smeltertown site were brought down in 2013.

Asarco has been found responsible for environmental pollution at 20 Superfund sites across the U.S. by the Environmental Protection Agency. Those sites are:

  1. Interstate Lead Company, or ILCO, labeled EPA Site ALD041906173, and located in Leeds, Jefferson County, Alabama[2]
  2. Argo Smelter, Omaha & Grant Smelter, labeled EPA Site COD002259588, and located at Vasquez Boulevard and I-70 in Denver, Colorado[3]
  3. Smeltertown, a copper smelter used to illegally dispose of hazardous waste, in El Paso, El Paso County, Texas. The plant has since been dismantled.[4]
  4. California Gulch mine and river systems in Leadville, Colorado;
  5. Summitville Consolidated Mining Corp., Inc. (SCMCI), now bankrupt, EPA Site COD983778432, in Del Norte, Rio Grande County, Colorado;
  6. ASARCO Globe Plant, EPA Site COD007063530, Globeville, near South Platte River, Denver and Adams County, Colorado;
  7. Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical, Coeur d'Alene River Basin, Idaho;
  8. Kin-Buc Landfill in New Jersey;
  9. Tar Creek Superfund site (Ottawa County) lead and zinc operations and surrounding residences in Oklahoma;
  10. Commencement Bay, Near Shore/Tide Flats smelter, groundwater, and residences in Tacoma and Ruston, Washington.

Cases in Mexico[edit]

Pasta de Conchos mine disaster[edit]

On February 19, 2006, an explosion occurred in a coal mine in San Juan de Sabinas, Coahuila, that is owned by Grupo México. It was reported that mine workers had gone on strike against Grupo México at least 14 times, "not only for salary increases… but because of its constant refusal to review security and health measures." Grupo México said that they, in conjunction with the mining union, signed a certificate on February 7, 2006 declaring the mine safe.[5]

Although the mining operations of a coal deposit is always a risky business, due to the possibility of huge gas concentrations, there are certain theories that indicate the mine has an important lack of safety rules, very similar to the problem presented in the Sago Mine disaster in West Virginia with the accident that caused death of 12 miners on January 2, 2006. [4]

After the successful rescue of 33 trapped miners in October 2010 in Copiapó, Chile, the case gained popularity again, and many people including bishop Raúl Vera demanded that the case be reopened. Grupo México has not responded.[6]

Rio Sonora spill[edit]

On August 6th 2014 40,000 cubic meters of copper sulphate were spilled on Sonora River and Bacanuchi by Buenavista del Cobre mine. This has been considered the largest environmental spillage in Mexico's history, polluting 7 municipal districts from Sonora state and affecting by October more than 20,000 people. Pollution has been reported to be reaching Arizona. Though a trustfund was created to assist the damaged population, complains about its management and proper ecological cleaning have been expressed. [7] A second spillage, this time sulfur dioxide was reported [8]

Rail operations[edit]

Grupo Ferroviario Mexicano, S.A. de C.V.[edit]

Runs Mexico’s largest and most profitable railway with near 9,600 kilometres (6,000 miles) of tracks and 15,000 carloads, transporting over 40% of all the rail cargo of the country. GMEXICO acquired the rail concession from the Mexican federal government for 100 years in 1998. GMEXICO owns 74% and Union Pacific 26% of the company. The railway, known as FERROMEX, has the largest coverage of the nation’s railway system. The rail system connects the main cities in the country, where 70% of industrial production is created and services five land ports on the border with USA, four seaports on the Pacific Ocean and two on the Gulf of Mexico.

Intermodal México, S.A. de C.V.[edit]

Operates since November 2001. Its objective is to develop and provide multi-modal services and logistics for load transportation. For such purposes it has constructed facilities in Guadalajara, Monterrey, Torreón, Silao, Saltillo and is in the process of constructing several other facilities in major cities of central and Northern Mexico.

Texas Pacifico, Inc.[edit]

Holds and operates the Texas Pacifico railroad in the United States that interconnects the border point Ojinaga, ChihuahuaPresidio, Texas with the city of Fort Worth, Texas.

FERROSUR[edit]

On November 25, 2005, the railroad division acquired the company Ferrosur, creating a monopoly over the industry. This Transaction was duly notified to the Mexican Antitrust Commission.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ US Geological Survey; Gillian O'Connor, "LatAm copper giants want place on global stage," Financial Times, 24 August 2000.
  2. ^ "Grupo Mexico Threatens to Shut Down Cananea if Strike Continues," Engineering and Mining Journal, Vol. 204, No. 4, February 2003, pages 14–15; "Workers Strike at Mexican Copper Mine," Associated Press, 15 October 2004.
  3. ^ Sara Silver, "Approval expected for Grupo Mexico/ S Peru Copper," Financial Times, 23 October 2004.
  4. ^ "Mexican mine blast traps workers," BBC News, 20 February 2006. Link to article

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b GRUPO MEXICO SAB DE CV-SER B (GMEXICOB:Mexico): Financial Statements - Businessweek. Investing.businessweek.com. Retrieved on 2013-07-12.
  2. ^ ILCO EPA. Retrieved 4/10/08.
  3. ^ Argo Smelter, Omaha and Grant Smelter, EPA. Retrieved 4/10/08.
  4. ^ El Paso Smelter Timeline, EPA. Retrieved 7/23/2012.
  5. ^ Search for Mexican miners suspended Diario, Ciudad Juárez, February 25, 2006.
  6. ^ Chilean rescue revives anger in Mexico over 2006 miners' tragedy, Monsters and Critics, October 14, 2010.
  7. ^ "Nos estan dejando morir. Habitantes del Río sonora"
  8. ^ Profepa Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente (Spanish)

External links[edit]