UPDATE 1-Bolivia’s San Bartolome mine resumes ops-owner

* Bolivia’s top silver mines back on line after protest

* Sumitomo’s San Cristobal restarted on Monday

(Adds details, quote, background)

LA PAZ, Aug 17 (BestGrowthStock) – Coeur D’Alene (CDE.N: ) said
Tuesday its giant San Bartolome mine, the world’s largest pure
silver mine, had returned to normal after protesters lifted
demonstrations in Bolivia that hit foreign-owned mines.

Bolivian protesters ended more than two weeks of
demonstrations over government investment in the mineral-rich
Potosi region on Monday that disrupted the operations of
Coeur’s San Bartolome and Sumitomo’s San Cristobal.

“As of Monday evening, mining and processing activities at
San Bartolome have returned to normal,” Humberto Rada,
President of Coeur South America and Coeur’s Bolivian
subsidiary said in a statement.

U.S.-based Coeur is maintaining its production guidance for
the mine for 2010 of 6.5 million ounces of silver, the
statement said.

Japan’s Sumitomo (8053.T: ) said its silver-zinc-lead San
Cristobal mine had resumed operations hours before the protest
had officially ended. It had been forced to stop processing ore
after protesters threatened to cut energy supply to the mine.

The government and demonstrators reached agreements on a
border dispute between the Potosi and Oururo regions, on the
construction of an airport and cement factory and the
re-opening of a metals processing plant.

The combined output of the two mines accounts for over 80
percent of the nearly 1.1 million kg of fine silver Bolivia
produced in 2009, according to mining ministry data.
(Reporting by Fabian Cambero in Santiago; Writing by Eduardo
Garcia; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

UPDATE 1-Bolivia’s San Bartolome mine resumes ops-owner