Workers agree strike action at Antamina copper mine in Peru as talks fail

5 November 2014 (Last Updated November 5th, 2014 06:21)

Mining workers at Antamina copper mine in Peru have decided to proceed with a proposed strike from Monday, after talks with management ended inconclusively.

Mining workers at Antamina copper mine in Peru have decided to proceed with a proposed strike from Monday, after talks with management ended inconclusively.

Antamina labour union (SUTRACOMASA) secretary general Jorge Juarez told Reuters that the union is not inclined to hold further talks that delay their plans to down tools.

Antamina workers are demanding a bonus according to the company's profit sharing agreement; however, management has cited low copper production and falling global prices as the reason for failing to deliver on the bonus agreement.

In 2013, Peru contributed 7% of the world's copper production but, currently, there is a drop in copper production.

"Management has cited low copper production and falling global prices...for failing to deliver on the bonus agreement." 

Antamina's vice-president for human resources and safety Silvio Brigneti told the agency: "Finding a path to understanding, beyond demands that cannot be met, is now in their hands.

"The only thing the strike will achieve is a reduction in profits."

Juarez stated: "We haven't gone anywhere with negotiations.

"The strike plan continues just as before."

Antamina mine contributes 30% to Peru's overall copper production at 30,000t of produced every month.

The main stakeholders of Antamina are BHP Billiton and Glencore Xstrata, each holding a 33.75% share. The other owners are Teck Resources with 22.5% and Mitsubishi which holds 10%.

Copper production at Antamina mine has fallen by 16% this year compared to same period in 2013.