July 14, 2017 / 3:56 PM / a year ago

Antofagasta reaches wage agreement with Centinela mine supervisors

SANTIAGO, July 14 (Reuters) - Chilean mining company Antofagasta said on Friday it had reached a new wage agreement with supervisors at its Centinela copper mine, defusing the risk of a strike amid a volatile labor landscape in the South American country.

The supervisors’ union voted to strike in early July, but instead of downing tools immediately, entered a new round of government-mediated negotiations with the company as required by law. During those talks, the supervisors agreed to a new 36-month contract.

“The agreement, which was reached during the mediation phase, will be formalized today, July 14,” Antofagasta said in a statement.

Antofagasta is currently in government-mediated negotiations with workers at the nearby Zaldivar copper mine.

New labor laws have emboldened miners throughout Chile, the world’s top copper exporter, while low prices for the red metal have made contract offers less generous than in past years. (Reporting by Fabian Cambero; Writing by Gram Slattery; Editing by Bernadette Baum)

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