Cerrejon workers accept pay deal

THE month-long strike at Cerrejon looks set to end, with the majority of workers accepting the company’s three-year salary offer.
Cerrejon workers accept pay deal Cerrejon workers accept pay deal Cerrejon workers accept pay deal Cerrejon workers accept pay deal Cerrejon workers accept pay deal

Image courtesy of Cerrejon.

Staff Reporter

According to union Sintracarbon, the accord was presented to workers from Monday to Wednesday last week and, following majority approval, the drafting of a final document began on Thursday.

Expected to be signed and finalised by Friday, discussions and drafting have continued because of disagreement over specific wording in the document, according to a union statement.

Workers chose a three-year offer as opposed to another two-year choice on the table because the longer agreement would give them a bonus of about $7000, Reuters reports.

That deal gives workers a pay increase of 5.1% in the first year and then other increments adjusted for inflation in the following two years.

Before the strike began, the company offered a rise of 5% while the union asked for 7%.

Cerrejon is Colombia’s biggest coal mine, producing 100,000 tons of coal a day. It has not produced any coal since the strike began on February 7.

The mine is owned by Xstrata, Anglo American and BHP Billiton.

Colombia is the world’s fourth-largest coal exporter. It produced 87 million metric tons in 2011, falling short of a 100Mt goal, in part because of a 25-day coal railway strike that forced output target cutbacks.

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