Strike halts work at Egypt's Sukari gold mine: Management

Ahram Online, Tuesday 6 Mar 2012

Workers at gold mine in Eastern Desert strike for better pay and conditions, management brands strike "illegal"

Egypt Sukari gold mine
Egypt Sukari gold mine (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Operations at Egypt's Sukari gold mine have been halted due to "labour unrest," Centamin-Egypt, the mine's operating company, said in statement to the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

Mine workers began the strike on Saturday to demand better salaries and increased hazard pay. Company management has reportedly rejected their demands.

"The illegal unrest and work stoppage commenced as a result of a breakdown in ongoing discussions involving general salary increases and other benefits with some members of the Sukari workforce," the Egyptian-Australian venture's statement read.

According to Centamin-Egypt chairman, Sami El-Raghy, the minimum monthly wage for company workers rose by 60 per cent in 2011 to LE2000.

Egyptians comprise 97 per cent of the company's total workforce of just over 1,500 employees.

The company added that discussions between management and workers are continuing. Centamin added that it has the full support of the Egyptian Mineral Resources Authority and the Ministry of Petroleum.

Centamin PLC, which holds a 50 per cent stake in Centamin-Egypt, is listed on the FTSE index. It has interests in four mineral licenses in Ethiopia, where it is conducting further exploration activities.

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