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Tuesday 31st
posted by Peter Lazenby in Britain

CONSTRUCTION workers building Hinkley Point nuclear power station in Somerset have won a new pay deal after voting for strike action.

Unions called off strike threats yesterday after bosses of energy firm EDF at Hinkley agreed to pay 36 per cent more than the pay rates laid out in a national construction industry agreement.

GMB criticised EDF for choosing to take the dispute “to the wire,” which could have had “devastating consequences” for the project.

Regional officer Adie Baker said: “GMB members can concentrate on the future now this long-running dispute, which had threatened to disrupt progress on the project, has been resolved.

“We will now ensure the negotiated agreements are fully implemented and those members eligible for back payments receive every penny that they are entitled to.”

Unite regional secretary Peter Hughes said: “This is a landmark agreement which will now set the benchmark for pay rates on flagship construction projects throughout the UK.

“The pay rates agreed at Hinkley Point will provide a significant boost to the local economy and, together with the ambitious apprenticeship programme on the project, will generate much-needed skills boost and investment in the south-west region.”

Hinkley Point’s programme and construction delivery director Nigel Cann said the workforce will now benefit from a reward package which is both “best in class” and affordable.

He said: “We share a commitment with the trade unions and our contract partners to provide the best standards in health, safety and welfare in tandem with the highest standards of quality and productivity as we work together to deliver this vital project.”