SANTIAGO (Reuters) – The union at a operations center at BHP’s Escondida and Spence copper mines in Chile have asked their partners to vote for a strike due to lack of progress in their contract negotiation, the president told Reuters on Monday. of the guild.
The partners, who operate BHP’s Integrated Operations Center (CIO), manage pits, concentrator and cathode plants from the Chilean capital to deposits located in the north of the country.
After starting talks at the end of March, the union received a final offer over the weekend that must be voted on this week and which they consider insufficient.
“We are raising awareness among our people to vote for the strike, hopefully 100%,” said Jessica Orellana, president of the union.
“The demands of the workers were not heard, so we are too disappointed in the response that BHP gave because after all they discriminate against workers and do not recognize them in the production chain,” he added.
According to local legislation, after the approval of the strike, the parties still have a negotiation instance with the mediation of the government for between five and 10 days before the stoppage materializes.
However, the leader acknowledged that in their negotiation there is a legal vacuum that could be used by BHP to replace them in the event of a strike, since they are under the figure of a service contract for the mines.
Orellana, however, trusted that the site workers would not accept to replace this work. “They would be doing other functions that do not correspond to them,” he said.
BHP did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the matter.
Escondida, the world’s largest copper deposit, produced 1.19 million tonnes in 2020, while Spence added 146,700 tonnes.
(Report by Fabián Andrés Cambero)