CONAKRY, May 16 (Reuters) - Operations at Societe Miniere de Boke’s bauxite mine in Guinea have restarted following a nearly two-week strike that caused a halt in production of the aluminium ore, the company’s managing director said on Wednesday.
The company - owned by Guinea, China’s Winning Shipping Ltd, Shandong Weiqiao and UMS International Ltd - said on Monday it had already lost between 1 million to 1.2 million tonnes of scheduled bauxite production because of the strike.
Losses due to the strike had been running to $1 million a day.
“The overwhelming majority of workers went back to work this morning even if there are a few scattered blockages without any impact on shipments,” Frederic Bouzigues told Reuters in a text message.
Guinea’s volatile western town of Boke frequently suffers strikes and protests from a local population that feels largely excluded from its vast mineral wealth, including both mining employees and those who failed to find work in its mines.
The poor West African nation contains one of the world’s richest iron ore and bauxite deposits and has proven reserves of gold and diamonds, but despite decades of mining, it has stayed near the bottom of the U.N. Human Development Index. (Reporting by Saliou Samb; writing by Joe Bavier; editing by John Stonestreet and Louise Heavens)