Construction Strike in Panama Postponed

Business Chamber and Workers Union have agreed to continue negotiations which has postponed the threat of a general strike for 20 days.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

It is estimated that losses to the Panama construction sector could be more than $9 million a day if the general workers strike takes place. The workers are demanding, among other things, that a single wage scale be established at a national level.

The union of construction workers in Panama (Suntracs) "... called a strike that would have started today, and which if it took place would have paralyzed 400 projects across the country, but a closer relations between workers and employers slowed the move by trade unionists. The agreement between workers and employers states that negotiations will focus on the list of demands presented by Suntracs on February 24 at the Ministry of Labor and Workforce Development (Mitrade). "

"... In recent days, workers and employers adopted 15 clauses, leaving 35 to be ratified, out of a maximum of 152 contained in the list. Among the approved clauses are payments for food and transportation. The SUNTRACS proposal contains increases ranging from 50% in the first year, 200% in the fourth year of the convention, which represent over 530 billion dollars per year according to the businessmen. "

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Panama: End to Construction Strike

May 2014

Employers and the union have signed a collective agreement for 2014-2017 establishing a tiered wage increase starting with 27 cents in the first year.

Representatives of the Union of Construction Workers and Similar Entities (SUNTRACS) and the Panamanian Chamber of Construction (CAPAC) signed the collective agreement, effective until 2017, that includes a salary adjustment of 98 cents an hour, to be implemented in stages over four years, representing 35.87 %, or 9% per annum.

Construction Strike in Panama

April 2014

The decision by employers not to give in to the exorbitant wage demands made by the union has led to the paralysis of construction works, including that of the Panama Canal.

Following the order from the leadership of the union, workers have halted construction on several real estate projects in the Panamanian capital, in protest against the refusal of the Chamber of Construction to concede to their demands for wage increases.

Panama: New Construction Strike Threat

April 2014

Although companies are willing to make adjustments from 2% to 4% in the three years that the new Collective Bargaining Agreement is in effect, the union wants more.

On April 23, work in the sector could be halted if companies and the union can not reach an agreement that satisfies the workers' union.

Panama: Talks Between Employers and Construction Union Break Down

February 2014

After weeks of conflict, the parties have ended talks and left resolution of the problem in the hands of the Ministry.  

The Trade Union of Construction Workers and Similar (Suntracs) and the Panamanian Chamber of Construction (CAPAC) confirmed that the Ministry of Labor and Workforce Development (Mitradel) will have to mediate between the two parties, once the round of negotiations has been suspended.