CBH Resources expects to reduce production and its workforce at the Endeavour lead-zinc mine north of Cobar in New South Wales following a “review of operational strategies.”
The beleaguered company will reduce a staff of 161 full-time workers and 40 contractors at the mine to just 71 people, a reduction of nearly two-thirds.
CBH has suffered ongoing cash losses at the Endeavour mine throughout the first half of 2019. The mine has been producing since 1983 and owned by CBH since 2003.
The Endeavour underground mine is a major employer for Cobar, which has a population of around 4000 people.
Production at Endeavour will be reduced to around 17,000 tonnes a month for the rest of the year.
“This decision has not been taken lightly. In the coming days we will consult with all our employees and put in place support services to assist people who are affected as a result of these changes,” CBH said in a statement.
It is not the first time that the mine has been subject to severe job losses. In early 2016, Endeavour lost 116 of 170 staff (on top of salary freezes), following an 80 per cent cut to production due to low commodity prices at the time.
CBH Resources is a fully owned subsidiary of Japanese company Toho Zinc.