Wage prices slug Indian collieries

INDIAN coal is set to become more expensive as state-owned firms Coal India and Singareni Collieries will be hit by wage increases of 24% from the signing of the eighth National Coal Wage Agreement.

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Reported by India’s Economic Times, the agreement will also give some 500,000 non-executive workers a 285% increase in gratuity payment.

The agreement is also retrospective to 2006, providing a cash drain for the coal companies.

“Coal India may be forced to increase coal prices as it will end up this fiscal [year] with a liability of close to Rs 5,000 crore [$US1.02 billion] after adjusting new wages for its workers retrospectively from June 30, 2006,” Coal India chairman Partha S Bhattacharyya told the newspaper.

The wage agreement period ends in 2011.

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