Global Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto PLC will be conducting a manpower downsizing at its Clermont mine in Queensland, Australia, set off by a double whammy rising domestic costs and continued lower world prices in the Asian market.
Rio Tinto CEO Tom Albanese
"A review is underway and although the details are to be worked out, it will unfortunately mean redundancies will be required," a spokesman for Rio Tinto PLC said in an emailed statement. "We do not take this decision lightly."
It is still not clear however how many posts and what specific posts will be affected by the job cuts.
Newly opened in 2010, Clermont mine is the supposed intended replacement for the Blair Athol thermal coal mine. The latter is programmed to close in 2013.
Supposed production expectations from Clermont mine was as much as 12.2 million metric tons of coal a year. It currently has more than more than 770 workers.
Increased coal exports from the U.S. have largely affected prices of thermal coal in the world market, tumbling from $115 a tonne last year to just over $83 a tonne at present. Supply has also been affected by China's lowering appetite spurred by its imposed slowed down economy.
Rio Tinto PLC's coal division said it had to look ways to continue and ensure business stability since they also have to contend with new taxes, as well as mounting fuel and equipment bills.
The Rio Tinto PLC spokesman likewise did not elaborate if the review recommended slashing jobs might at the company's other mines.
The Anglo-Australian miner's thermal coal output in the first six months of the year has registered at 8.91 million tonnes, up 2 per cent from a year ago.
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