Workers at BHP Billiton Ltd resumed strikes on Sunday as labor unions prepare for the last two rounds of talks with management.
Employees at the Gregory and Crinum mines started shift long stoppages that typically last 12 hours, Mr Stephen Smyth a division president at the construction, forestry, mining and energy union in Queensland said that the company plans two sets of meetings with the union in August before seeking a vote on a new work agreement.
About 3,500 workers at BHP’s coking-coal mines have been taking part in a series of strikes that began in June, the first in a decade at the company’s Australian mines. Miners globally are stepping up demand for better pay and job security as producers such as BHP and Xstrata Plc are forecast to report record earnings, driven by demand from China.
Mr Smyth said that “We’ve made some slight progress, but on the big ticket items it’s slow going. If we’re not happy with the contents of any agreement, we will tell our members that. We are considering ramping up the action if there isn’t progress.”