Workers at a huge nickel mine in Canada owned by Vale ( VALE), the Brazilian mining giant, went on strike Monday after the collapse of collective bargaining -- a move that some industry watchers feel could help the mining industry in general. Already Vale had temporarily shut down the mine, which produced 31% of the company's 2008 nickel yield, for an eight-week period beginning June 1, due to weak demand amid the global recession. More than 3,200 workers went on strike, the vast majority at the Sudbury nickel mine, in Ontario. A nearby gold, silver and platinum property had 116 workers head to the picket line. Meanwhile, in Peru, miners went on strike at an iron-ore vein owned by the Chinese extractor Shoungang, shutting down production at the facility, which produces about 7.5 million tons of ore a year. Somewhat counterintuitively, perhaps, the strikes could prove a boon to metal extractors, who've been suffering by and large from slumping demand and prices. According to a research note by mining stock analyst Anthony Rizzuto, of the small investment bank Dahlman Rose, "We believe that strikes such as these will continue to be a supportive feature of metals and mineral prices over the intermediate to long-term, as they effectively remove supply from the market, and push the marginal cost of production higher." Vale's American Depository Receipts were trading relatively flat Tuesday afternoon at $16.43, down 2 cents from the previous close, on volume of 21 million. Average daily turnover is 31 million.