Glencore Xstrata slashes 450 jobs at Queensland coking coal mines

Glencore Xstrata said it would cut production at its Newlands and Oaky Creek coking coal mines and slash 450 jobs by the end of 2013.

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“Against a backdrop of lower coal prices, high input costs and the strong Australian dollar, the decision to cut production at the mining operations has been taken to maintain viability in a challenging market,” Glencore Xstrata said on Thursday June 27.

The company will continue production at the Oaky North mine at Oaky Creek with only one longwall in operation, which will result in a downsizing of 150 positions.

At Newlands, the company will cut back on both underground and open-cut operations, which will reduce headcount by 300.

“This is a difficult decision, but one that needs to be taken in the current challenging economic conditions,” its statement read.

It added that the changes were part of ongoing reviews of its coal operations in an increasingly challenging economic climate.

Earlier this week, Peabody Energy reportedly said it would cut more than 400 contractor positions across its Australian coal mines while engineering and mining services firm Downer EDI said it planned to cut 185 jobs at BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance’s Goonyella Riverside mine.