(Adds comments from company spokeswoman)
By Noe Torres and Susan Taylor
MEXICO CITY/TORONTO, Sept 29 Protesters in
northern Mexico blocked access to the Penasquito mining complex
operated by Goldcorp Inc on Thursday, but the company
said operations were unaffected and the issue would be resolved
Vancouver-based Goldcorp said the blockade was illegal and
caused by a trucking contractor concerned about losing business
due to efficiency improvements at the mine.
"The blockade is not affecting operations. We have met with
the contractor's representatives and expect this to be resolved
shortly," spokeswoman Christine Marks said in an email.
The blockade, which includes landowners and truck drivers,
began on Monday, Felipe Pinedo, one of the protest leaders, said
in a telephone interview. Demands include payment for
environmental damages, jobs, and water for their communities, he
In late August, Reuters reported on a long-running leak of
contaminated water, which had not been disclosed to the public,
at the mine, Mexico's biggest gold deposit.
A source close to the company, who requested anonymity
because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the
blockade risked interrupting production at the mine, which was
operating below capacity. Last year, Penasquito produced 860,300
ounces of gold, a quarter of Goldcorp's total production.
"If the blockade is not lifted immediately, the company will
not have material by Saturday," he said.
(Reporting by Noe Torres and Susan Taylor; Editing by Michael
Perry and Richard Chang)