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Court rules against strike at 11,200-MW Belo Monte hydropower plant

ALTAMIRA, Brazil 4/30/12 (PennWell) -- A Brazilian court has ruled that a work stoppage on the country's 11,200-MW Belo Monte hydroelectric project is illegal, South American sources report.

Workers at the hydropower plant went on strike early this past week, demanding improved pay and more time to visit family members, according Sintrapav, or the Union of Heavy Construction Industry Workers.

A judge in the regional labor court of Para ruled that a contract signed in November between the workers and project operator Norte Energia (also called Consorcio Construtor Belo Monte) is valid through October because its terms were not violated.

The court says the workers will be fined US$106,000 per day if they do not return to work.

Arcadis recently signed a deal worth US$146 million to join the Norte Energia consortium.

Belo Monte will be the world's third-largest hydroelectric plant when completed and is one of several projects currently being developed in Brazil. Commissioning is scheduled for 2015.

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