March 26, 2018 / 4:23 PM / a month ago

Workers at Chile's Los Pelambres mine reach deal on labour agreement: union

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - Workers at Antofagasta PLC’s (ANTO.L) Los Pelambres copper mine in Chile reached agreement on a new labour contract, defusing the risk of a strike, the union said on Monday.

FILE PHOTO: A view of a miners' camp inside Antofagasta's Los Pelambres mine near Los Caimanes town, Chile, January 27, 2007. REUTERS/Victor Ruiz Caballero/File Photo

Workers in the mine’s largest union had last week rejected an offer for a new labour contract, triggering a period of government mediation and raising the spectre of the first-ever strike at a mine owned by Chilean miner Antofagasta.

The new contract, agreed upon by 82 percent of union members, includes a signing bonus of $30,500 per worker, and an average salary increase of 3 percent.

“After six months of negotiations, we’ve reached a satisfactory deal. All of the conditions and benefits we obtained are above market-average,” said Sergio Munoz, president of Los Pelambres’ largest union of workers.

    Antofagasta did not immediate reply to requests for comment.

    Los Pelambres, which recently received environmental approval for a $1.1 billion infrastructure upgrade plan, produced 356,300 tons of copper last year.

    Chile is the world’s top copper producer.

    Reporting by Antonio De la Jara, writing by Dave Sherwood; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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