UPDATE 1-Grupo Mexico sees 2014 copper output steady despite Buenavista spill

Thu Sep 4, 2014 9:54pm EDT

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(Adds detail on reserve created to pay off costs of accident)

MEXICO CITY, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Mexican miner Grupo Mexico said on Thursday its massive Buenavista copper mine in northern Mexico was operating normally after a toxic spill and reaffirmed its overall copper output for this year at 850,000 tonnes.

A toxic leak at the copper mine, one of the world's biggest, released 40,000 cubic meters of mining acid into the Bacanuchi River in the northern state of Sonora last month, leading critics to call for massive fines against the company and even an end to its Buenavista concession.

On Monday, Mexico's environmental prosecutor Profepa said it had imposed a new partial order of closure of the mine's leaching storage areas due to Grupo Mexico's failure to abide by applicable rules as well as "highly risky activities."

But in a statement to the Mexican bourse, the company said it expected output of 1 million tonnes in 2015.

On the basis of preliminary technical studies, Grupo Mexico has created a 300 million peso ($22.8 million) reserve to repair the damages caused by the accident and pay off fines imposed, the company said.

(1 U.S. dollar = 13.152 Mexican pesos) (Reporting by Gabriel Stargardter; Editing by Simon Gardner, Dave Graham and Lisa Shumaker)

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