4 Oct 2006

Strike in New Caledonia in 10th day

3:58 pm on 4 October 2006

A strike in New Caledonia by the Federation of New Caledonian Workers Union, or CSTNC, has entered its tenth day.

The union has several demands, including lower living costs, the departure of foreign workers and the resignation of the government.

Our Noumea correspondent, Tuo Chinula, says the strike is not affecting the general public much, as the union is concentrating its action on the territory's nickel companies.

"Those who are on strike are members of the CSTNC union, most of them are on strike, but I don't have the the exact numbers. Since the beginning of the week, it is mostly the SLN nickel company that is affected, because the strikers are picketing outside the nickel smelter in Noumea and they are allowing only a trickle of workers to go in the company to work."

Tuo Chinula says construction work at the Goro Nickel site is continuing, but on a smaller scale with only about a third of the workforce.

The union has held talks with the government and the nickel companies but no resolution has been reached.