(Adds nation’s output in fourth paragraph.)
Nov. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Union workers at Glencore International Plc’s Prodeco Group returned to their posts at a coal mine in Colombia after resolving a wage dispute.
Employees ended a strike that began Nov. 16 at the Calenturitas mine in northern Colombia, according to Raul Sosa, president of a labor group known as Sintramienergetica that represents mine workers.
Strikes and rainstorms have hampered production this year in Colombia, South America’s largest coal producer. A walkout trimmed output at Prodeco’s La Jagua mine before workers returned to their jobs in July. A fatal accident temporarily halted output this month at two Colombian coal mines owned by Drummond Co.
The Andean nation will produce 85 million metric tons of coal this year, compared with 74.4 million tons last year, Mines and Energy Minister Mauricio Cardenas said yesterday. The forecast is higher than an August estimate that output may slide to under 80 million tons by Bogota-based Large Scale Mining, a trade group which represents companies including Baar, Switzerland-based Glencore.
Prodeco used stockpiles to make shipments since protests halted output, Sosa said today by phone from northern Colombia. Calenturitas produces 4 million to 5 million tons of coal annually, according to Sosa.
Prodeco has production capacity of 14.5 million tons of coal at Calenturitas and La Jagua, according to its website.
Coal prices at the Australian port of Newcastle and at Richards Bay in South Africa may decline next year as some utilities in Asia limit purchases, according to a Bloomberg News survey.
--Editors: Charles Siler, Dale Crofts
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