Min­cor set to cut jobs, re-eval­u­ate op­er­a­tions

Kalgoorlie Miner - - NEWS - Jar­rod Lu­cas

Min­cor Resources has spent $1.74 mil­lion on re­dun­dancy pay­ments in the past six months, financial state­ments re­veal, as the Kam­balda nickel miner flagged an­other round of job cuts yes­ter­day.

The de­pressed nickel price has forced Min­cor to re-eval­u­ate the fu­ture of its Mariners and Mi­itel op­er­a­tions and the miner will switch to a sin­gle shift to lower costs.

“Un­for­tu­nately it will also in­volve fur­ther re­dun­dan­cies among Min­cor’s work­force,” the com­pany said yes­ter­day.

The change will also re­sult in pro­duc­tion fall­ing to about 4000 to 5000 tonnes of ore per month.

Min­cor is tar­get­ing 1500 tonnes of nickel me­tal, or 56,000 tonnes of ore at 2.8 per cent nickel, for the fi­nal three quar­ters of the 2015-16 financial year.

The lat­est re­struc­ture comes as con­sult­ing group En­tech con­ducts fea­si­bil­ity stud­ies on Min­cor’s Durkin North and Bur­nett projects.

Min­cor said the smaller-scale op­er­a­tion would en­able the stud­ies’ com­ple­tion, as well as the drill-out of its Cassini dis­cov­ery.

Durkin North could cost as much as $30 mil­lion to bring into pro­duc­tion and Bur­nett is ex­pected to be about $16 mil­lion.

The lat­est cut­backs fol­low Min­cor’s move in May to stop cap­i­tal de­vel­op­ment at Mariners and Mi­itel — a de­ci­sion which cost 50 jobs, or a quar­ter of the com­pany’s work­force.

By the end of July, both mines had been uni­fied into a sin­gle op­er­a­tion, with one man­age­ment team and one work crew.

It helped cut costs by 18 per cent as Min­cor de­liv­ered 1550 tonnes of nickel-in-ore at cash costs of $6.38/ lb in the Septem­ber quar­ter, down from $7.78/lb in the June quar­ter.

Min­cor has spent $770,000 and $970,000 on re­dun­dancy pay­ments in the past two quar­ters.

De­spite nickel’s strug­gles, Min­cor is in a strong financial po­si­tion, with $31.4 mil­lion cash in the bank.

Fel­low Kam­balda miner Panoramic Resources has al­ready placed its Lan­franchi nickel op­er­a­tions on care and main­te­nance, while In­de­pen­dence Group’s Long op­er­a­tions have scaled back pro­duc­tion.

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