Metallica Notches Win in Mexico

The metals company says a court overturns the nullification of a mining permit.
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Metallica Resources

(MRB)

, a Toronto-based mining company, has learned that a federal appeals court in Mexico City has overturned the nullification of the mining permit issued to the company's Mexican unit MSX.

Metallica said the decision was posted on the courthouse bulletin board, but it wasn't delivered directly to the company or MSX. The metals company explained that this type of posting is the Mexican courts' standard method of announcing verdicts before publishing the complete ruling.

Last year, MSX's mining permit issued by Mexico's environmental agency was canceled by a Mexican fiscal court. Despite that ruling, MSX's permit remained valid while the ruling was being appealed. The Metallica unit had thwarted two previous legal challenges over the permit.

"We are still waiting to review the Court's ruling, but based on the information that has been publicly posted, this is an important step forward for our operation at Cerro San Pedro," said Richard Hall, Metallica's president and CEO. "We have worked closely with the Mexican authorities at all levels to ensure that this project meets the highest international standards of environmental and cultural protection while at the same time providing substantial economic and social benefits to the local communities."

Metallica is still working with the Mexican government to resolve the last issue before it can start construction, that being the approval of a blasting permit for 2005. Metallica received its annual permit for 2004 and has been trying to get approval of this year's blasting permit.

Shares of Metallica rose 4 cents to $1.17 on the American Stock Exchange.