11 Jul '11, 3pm

Chile strike halts world's largest copper miner

SANTIAGO - UNIONISED workers at Chile's Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, announced a 24-hour strike on Monday over modernisation plans they say would amount to the start of privatisation. The strike - the company's first in 18 years - will halt work at a state-owned mining operation that produces 11 per cent of the world's copper. The nationwide strike will affect all company units, said Raimundo Espinoza, president of the Federation of Copper Workers (FTC), which represents some 15,000 Codelco workers. The workers oppose modernisation plans being implemented by company officials appointed after President Sebastian Pinera, the first conservative to take office in 20 years. The plans include shedding some 2,600 jobs, amounting to more than 10 per cent of Codelco's workforce. The strike would halt production of about 4,900 tonnes of copper and generate losses of...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/World/Story/STIS...

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