A stoppage at Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.'s Grasberg mine in Indonesia could be resolved within days, with talks between workers and management progressing well, a union official said on Wednesday.
Last week, Freeport Indonesia, which operates the world's second largest copper mine and the largest gold mine, told its workers not to work due to safety concerns linked to labor unrest.
Attempts to return the mine to normal after a three-month strike last year have been hampered by protracted disputes between management and union workers, as well as by security concerns.
The mine is still suspended until today, union spokesman Juli Parorrongan told Reuters, adding that progress was being made in management talks. We are trying to negotiate to resolve this problem. It is looking good.
Not too long ... the operations will be running again and normal again, Parorrongan added. Maybe for next week, I think this problem will be resolved.
Intimidation and violence by some workers against others who did not take part in last year's strike have disrupted the mine in the highlands of central Papua, the company said on Thursday.
There had been no injuries to workers during the current stoppage, said Parorrongan.
The Grasberg strike ended Dec. 14 with a deal for a pay increase, allowing workers to gradually return to work, but the force majeure has yet to be officially lifted.
Earlier this month, Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc said it wanted to extend its contract with Indonesia's government to enable it to run the world's second-biggest copper mine beyond 2021.
Arizona-based Freeport could not immediately offer comment on Wednesday.