Latin America & Caribbean

Chile mine owner to sell assets to avoid bankruptcy

Image caption The Chilean mine drama captivated the nation and the world

The company which owns a mine in Chile where 33 men were trapped underground for more than two months has agreed to sell its assets to avoid bankruptcy.

Creditors gave the San Esteban Mining Company 15 months to repay its debts.

Six weeks on from the dramatic rescue of the Chilean miners, the San Jose mine has remained shut.

Some of the money from the sale will be used as severance pay for the more than 300 miners and plant workers who lost their jobs after the collapse.

In addition, the Chilean government is trying to recoup the money that it spent on the rescue operation.

That is thought to have cost between $10m and $20m (£12.5m).

The rest of the money will be used to pay off the company's other debts, which are estimated at around $10m.

Following the rescue, Chilean President Sebastian Pinera had vowed the San Jose mine would never open again.