Radio New Zealand reported yesterday that 90 gold miners are walking off the job in Waihi at the weekend in a bid for more pay from their employer, OceanaGold Corporation (TSX & ASX: OGC).
The 48-hour strike is the first of a series planned over the coming weeks by the union E tū.
Organiser Myles Leeson told Radio NZ members agreed to a union-initiated roster which reduced “excessive hours” that have led to problems with fatigue.
But he said that would mean pay cuts of up to 19%.
Leeson reportedly said said OceanaGold had enjoyed a record profit this year and recent surveys had revealed a lot of gold in a new field - up to seven times the amount expected.
He claimed despite that, the company said it could not offer workers more than a 2% rise.
Radio NZ said a spokesman for OceanaGold said the company had offered a very fair pay increase to its workers.
“There's been quite a lengthy negotiation period over the last several months and we actually think we've made a very fair offer,” he reportedly said.
“We're looking forward to resolving any outstanding issues and gaining agreements in a timely manner.”
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