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MEXICO CITY (AP) _ Mexico's state oil monopoly began restoring its petroleum production Wednesday after cutting it in half in the Gulf of Mexico during Tropical Storm Isidore, the company said in a statement.

The areas affected by the hurricane normally produce 2.78 million barrels a day, but that was reduced to 1.38 million barrels daily during the storm. Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, said the reduction forced Mexico to briefly suspend crude exports.

On Wednesday, Pemex officials said they had begun work to restore production and exports.

The company produced a total of 3.21 million barrels a day in August, and exported an average of 1.69 million barrels daily.

More than 8,000 workers were evacuated from platforms in the Gulf of Mexico as the storm approached on Sunday. No major damage was reported.