Consortium expanding Panama canal reaches deal with union, avoids strike
PANAMA CITY Aug 11 (Reuters) - A Spanish-led consortium working to expand the Panama Canal has reached an initial deal with workers to raise wages and head off a proposed strike, both sides said on Tuesday.
The workers' union had threatened to go on strike on Wednesday unless GUPC consortium, made up of Spanish builder Sacyr, Italy's Salini Impregilo and Belgium's Jan de Nul, agreed to raise salaries.
The Panama Canal Authority had called for the two parties to reach a deal to avoid another work stoppage, which would have cast doubts on a planned April 2016 launch for the expanded section of the waterway.
A strike last year stopped work on a third set of locks last year for 15 days, generating multi-million dollar losses for the Central American nation. (Reporting by Elida Moreno; Editing by Miral Fahmy)
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