Lossmaking Rio Tinto subsidiary to cut uranium mine workforce
Transitioning from open pit to underground mining, Australian uranium miner Energy Resources Australia is to cut the workforce at its Ranger mine to reduce costs.
Posted: Monday , 30 Jul 2012
Energy Resources Australia's Ranger uranium mine will cut jobs as mining slows and it begins underground exploration.
It comes as the miner made a loss of $51.5 million for the half year earnings ending 30 June, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).
Despite this the miner is still progressing with its mining its Pit 3, and actually saw a growth of 25% for total ore mined, and a 190% growth in actual ore mined as well, although it scheduled to finish mining at the site by the end of the year.
It is looking to reduce its costs to help it return to profit during its exploration phase, with ERA CEO Rob Atkinson reportedly saying that "we do have to position ourselves to become a smaller company moving forward.
"One of the benefits of having a very hot employment market up here is that we do have quite a bit of turnover.
"We're a fairly big company who are producing less and as such we are going to need less support and less people to support the mining operation.
"When we look at the overall numbers of the company, it will be less...we will be managing that predominantly through turnover."
According to the company its turnover rate for employees sits at around 22%.
In its latest results the company stated that its sales of uranium oxide had fallen to $148 million from the previous period of $235.6 million due to lower sales volumes, a higher exchange rate, and a drop in the price of uranium oxide.
It will continue its operations at the Ranger 3 Deeps exploration site, with work on the decline scheduled to commence in November.
The subsidiary of Rio Tinto recently signed new agreements to sell uranium to Russia.
Article published courtesy of Australian Mining. For more daily news and comment on Australia's mining sector click here