Rusal suspends bauxite mining in Guyana over labor conflict

United Co. Rusal Plc, Russia’s largest aluminum producer, suspended operations at its bauxite-mining unit in Guyana over a pay conflict with employees in the South American nation.

Workers at Bauxite Company of Guyana Ltd. "declined to work and demanded a pay increase, even though their salaries had been adjusted for forecast inflation at the end of last year," Rusal said Sunday in emailed comments.

The local government is considering whether to shut Rusal operations after the company dismissed 61 employees for walking off the job to demand higher salaries, Guyanese media Demerara Waves reported Saturday.

Rusal suspended mining at the bauxite unit on Feb. 15 and moved equipment to a guarded warehouse. The company said it held talks with the Guyana government, saying the employees should perform their duties in accordance with the labor contract. The company has about 500 employees in Guyana, according to its website.

(Reporting by Ilya Khrennikov).