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Chile Moves to Reduce Inequality Through Union Power

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President Michelle Bachelet is boosting union power to help redistribute the copper riches that have made Chile the wealthiest country in Latin America. Mining companies say the move risks further investment delays in an industry already reeling from higher costs and lower prices.

Seeking to redress the balance of industrial relations power three decades after Augusto Pinochet introduced a new labor code, Bachelet presented a bill yesterday that would make union leaders the sole authorized negotiators in wage bargaining and outlaw a company’s right to replace striking workers.