(Adds statement from Lumina, context)
By Antonio De la Jara
Aug 13 (Reuters) - The main union at Chile’s Caserones copper mine said on Monday that both sides had agreed to extend government mediation of labor talks until Thursday.
The agreement means a strike approved by 98.5 percent of workers in a vote on Sunday will be postponed, said José Zambra, a spokesman for the union at Caserones. The mine is majority owned by Pan Pacific Copper Co Ltd, a partnership between JX Holding Inc and Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co Ltd, and Mitsui & Co Ltd.
Claudio Raffo, human resources vice-president for Lumina, said the two sides had drawn up a document establishing common ground during the past five-days’ compulsory mediation, and would extend it in a bid to finalise a deal.
“We hope that our workers will appreciate the effort we have made to put a competitive offer on the table, especially considering the fact the company is still seeking to set achieveable production targets and control its costs,” he said in a statement sent to Reuters.
Caserones produced 122,800 tonnes of copper in 2017, just over 2 per cent of Chile’s total annual copper output. (Reporting by Antonio de la Jara; writing by Aislinn Laing and Diane Craft)