Mexico's Slim, other firms open to rebuilding collapsed metro line, president says

FILE PHOTO: Employees work as part of the investigations at the site where an overpass for a metro partially collapsed with train cars on it, in Mexico City, Mexico May 19, 2021. REUTERS/ Henry Romero

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Wednesday that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim's Grupo Carso and other firms that built the metro line that collapsed last month, killing 26 people, are willing to participate in rebuilding it.

Lopez Obrador said he met with Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and Slim, Latin American's richest man, to discuss a plan to rehabilitate as soon as possible the Metro 12 Line, which suffered the accident on May 3.

Slim and the other firms "are willing, eager to help and participate and I applaud that," Lopez Obrador said at a daily news conference, without specifying what their involvement might entail.

He added that both the government and firms wanted to avoid a court battle.

Sheinbaum on Friday said she would like the firms that built the metro railway to help pay for its reconstruction.

The line was built by a consortium led by Mexico's ICA along with Grupo Carso and French trainmaker Alstom SA.

Preliminary findings of an independent investigation published on June 16 showed the collapse of a section of the line was caused by a structural failure.

And in a separate inspection, the Civil Engineering Corps of Mexico said on Thursday it found evidence of other deficiencies and vulnerabilities that require further analysis.

The collapse, Mexico's biggest train accident in years, put pressure on close allies of Lopez Obrador as well as Slim.

(Reporting by Anthony Esposito; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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