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Industrial Action at Solid Energy Mines

3 November 2009

Industrial Action at Solid Energy Mines

About 780 employees working at Solid Energy coal mines are taking industrial action as negotiations continue for a new Multi-Employer Collective Agreement (MECA) with the Engineers’ Union.

About 180 HWE Mining Ltd employees working at Solid Energy’s Rotowaro Opencast Mine in the Waikato began industrial action early last week following a breakdown in talks. HWE Mining operates the mine for Solid Energy.

Barry Bragg, Solid Energy’s Chief Operating Officer, says that Solid Energy believes that support for these workers is the main reason for current industrial action on other sites but acknowledges that there may be other issues that have prompted the action.

“We’ve been in talks with the union for some time now, attempting to agree a new MECA. It’s disappointing that we’ve got to this point. Solid Energy and HWE Mining are asking the union to lift the action so that we can resume talks.”

About 100 miners at Solid Energy’s Huntly East Underground Mine, in the Waikato, took industrial action last Wednesday (28 October) in support of their Rotowaro colleagues. The union indicated that they would all return to work on Friday afternoon (30 October), but have not done so to date.

At 6am this morning, 500 workers at Solid Energy’s Stockton Opencast Mine employed by the Stockton Alliance (a partnership between Solid Energy and Downer EDI Mining) joined the industrial action.

About 120 miners at Solid Energy’s Spring Creek Underground Mine, near Greymouth, took industrial action for 24 hours on Friday, returning to work on Saturday morning.

ENDS

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