SMM6, March 25: industry consultants estimate that several days of strikes at the Chuquicamata copper mine have led to a production cut of about 10, 000 tons and a loss of more than $50 million for Codelco.
The strike entered its 12th day today, but there is still no sign of an agreement.
Codelco has made it clear that it has offered the best contract options for the miners.
However, the miners said higher pay would not resolve the dispute, but on an equal footing between the two sides.
On June 22nd local time, three unions at the Chuquicamata copper mine voted on the latest Codelco contract plan, with 55 per cent of the miners rejecting the latest contract plan.
Under Chilean labor regulations, the Codelco can redraft a new contract for a vote within five days, so the strike will last at least until June 28.
The strike is likely to have a broader impact as smelters and refineries under the Chuquicamata copper project deal with copper mines from northern Chile, which accounted for about half of the 1.68 million tons of copper produced for the whole of last year.
Codelco does face a lot of challenges this year. The company produced only 342000 tons of copper in the first quarter, down 18 per cent from a year earlier. Pre-tax profits also fell 31 per cent from a year earlier to $372 million. "correlation Analysis-[SMM interpretation] the tightening pattern of strike copper mines in Chuquicamata Copper Mine is still intensified.
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