UPDATE 3-Anglo American restarts Chile Los Bronces mine after protest

martes 25 de marzo de 2014 12:07 GYT
 

* Anglo had halted operations on Monday due to violent protest

* Los Bronces operations to be normalized by end of the day

* Protest highlights tensions with contract workers (Adds trader and analyst comments)

SANTIAGO, March 25 (Reuters) - Anglo American Plc is restarting operations at its Los Bronces copper mine in central Chile following a brief but violent protest by contract workers, a spokesman told Reuters early Tuesday.

"Shift workers are already going up to the mine to be able to restart operations," said Marcelo Esquivel, Anglo American's spokesman in Chile.

The mine should be operating normally by the end of the day, he said, adding there was no estimate of how the stoppage had hurt production. A Chile-based trader said the stoppage had been too brief to impact the market.

Los Bronces, perched high in the Andes near Santiago, produced 416,300 tonnes of red metal last year, roughly 7 percent of world No.1 copper producer Chile's overall output.

In the early hours of Monday, contract workers launched a protest over what they claim are layoff threats and the London-listed miner's refusal to negotiate a series of demands. A union representative said workers turned to violence because their demands hadn't been listened to.

The demonstrators set tires on fire, damaged installations and looted during the protest, according to Anglo. The protests ebbed on Monday night, allowing Anglo to restart operations.   Continuación...