Copper mine problems a headache for Xstrata

Problems at its huge copper mine in Chile have provided a fresh headache for the mining giant Xstrata, which is in the throes of a $32bn (£20bn) takeover by commodities trading giant Glencore.

Xstrata, which squeezed a higher offer from Ivan Glasenberg's Glencore last month, is attempting to turn around production at the Collahuasi mine, controlled with Anglo American.

The mine has been blighted by a combination of work stoppages, heavy rains and fatal accidents, prompting Anglo and Xstrata to put a recovery plan in place and appoint new bosses. Collahuasi, which accounted for just over a fifth of Xstrata's copper production last year, saw output fall 44 per cent in the three months to September.