August 15, 2018 / 5:49 AM / 4 months ago

Chile's Escondida union to take new labor proposal to members

SANTIAGO, Aug 15 (Reuters) - The union for Chile’s Escondida, the world’s largest copper mine, said on Wednesday it will avert its planned strike to consult members about a renewed proposal for a new labor contract from operator BHP .

“We have received a new offer that will be presented to members,” Patricio Tapia, union’s president, told Reuters without providing further details.

The new offer came in after six days of government-mediated negotiations that aim to avoid repeating last year’s historic 44-day strike at Escondida, which shook the global copper market and dragged the economic growth in Chile.

The union had said on Tuesday it had moved past other sticking points with the company, but would need the rest of the day to iron out remaining issues.

Carlos Allendes, a spokesman for the union, had said the two sides were close to reaching a deal, but stressed that key issues for workers, including health benefits, remain in dispute, risking the chance of an agreement.

Reporting By Antonio de la Jara, Writing By Mitra Taj, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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