BMA and mining unions making progress

BMA and the Single Bargaining Unit have been making progress in their latest round of negotiations.

It comes after the two entered into a framework agreement in early July.

For close to two years the CFMEU and the BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance have failed to reach a middle ground in the enterprise agreements for workers at BMA coal mines across the Bowen Basin.

They groups announced they were entering mediation in July, with the CFMEU stating that "given the importance in resolving this long-standing issue and in preserving the integrity of the process BMA and the unions have agreed that they will not be making any public comment until mediation has concluded.

In the latest development, the CFMEU says they "continue to work in good faith to complete an agreement", and have been aided by Fair Work Australia.

The Blackwater mine site schedule has been agreed to in principal, although some accommodation matters are still outstanding.

The next phase of discussions will focus on the Goonyella Riverside mine, Peak Down mine, and Moranbah accommodation issues.

Later in the month the two will look at the Gregory Crinum mine, Saraji mine, the closed Norwich Park mine, and accommodation issues in Emerald and Dysart.

These coal mine negotiations come amidst massive cut backs and coal mine closures in the region.

Earlier this week Rio Tinto announced it was closing its Blair Athol mine early; only days after it announced cut backs to support and service staff at its nearby Clermont coal mine and its Sydney and Melbourne offices.


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