Escondida copper mine workers union call for strike in Chile

15 September 2014 (Last Updated February 21st, 2020 06:28)

A labour union at Chile's Escondida copper mine Sindicato No. 1 has called for a strike from 22 to 24 September over demands to improve working conditions at the mine.

A labour union at Chile's Escondida copper mine Sindicato No. 1 has called for a strike from 22 to 24 September over demands to improve working conditions at the mine.

Around 2,800 workers have threatened to go on two 24-hour strikes at the mine, claimed the union.

According to the union, Escondida has infringed on labour standards such as overtime, holidays, hygiene and safety issues, reported Reuters.

The strike is expected to affect mining and port operations.

"If our demands are not met we will increase the level and scale of the strikes."

The union said in a statement: "The strike is a warning and a call to resolve labour shortcoming and irregularities.

"If our demands are not met we will increase the level and scale of the strikes," reported telesur.

The Escondida mine, which is claimed to be world's most productive copper mine, is 57.5%-owned by BHP Billiton, 30% by Rio Tinto and 10% by Jeco.

In 2013, it produced 1.19 million tonnes of copper, which represented 20% of the total copper production in Chile.

The union also carried out a similar 24-hour strike last year over pay and conditions, which did not have much affect on the company's copper production.

According to the data from Chilean Mining Society (Sonami), Chile's copper production is expected to rise by 3% this year, which is lower than 2013 figures.

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