No rise in minimum wage without Tia Maria

02 August 2015

A long anticipated rise in the minimum wage will not materialise until there is a pick-up in foreign investment, according to Prime Minister Pedro Cateriano.

It had been widely expected that this would be announced in President Ollanta Humala’s speech to Congress on 28 July. Subsequently, Economy Minister Alonso Segura announced that it was still under study. Only a day later, on 1 August, Cateriano ruled out any rise for the time being, laying part of the blame for this on the suspension of the Tía María open cast copper project in Arequipa (see, ). “We first have to reverse this situation (Tía María) in order to increase wages”, he said, pointing the finger at “corrupt” persons who seek to profit from protests on the premise that projects impact on the environment. Responding, Carmela Sifuentes, president of the CGTP labour confederation, described Cateriano’s stance as “blackmail”. According to the Ministry of Energy and Mines, negotiations over the future of Tía María are due to get under way over the next few weeks.

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