Coal job losses are a “certainty”: QRC

Queensland Resources Council CEO Michael Roche says further job cuts in the Queensland coal industry are a certainty as companies struggle to stay profitable.

Speaking at the Coaltrans Australia Conference in Brisbane yesterday, Roche said weak coal prices were hurting mining companies.

"At current prices, most thermal coal mines in this state are either running at a loss or struggling to stay in the black," he said.

"It is not a position unique to thermal because the contagion is spreading quickly among our premium coking coal operations."

Marking BMA's decision to close the Norwich Park mine, and Rio Tinto's decision to cut jobs at the Clermont site, Roche said the industry should prepare for more losses.

"The reality is that most QRC coal members are well down the track of extensive cost reviews," he said.

"Further job losses are a certainty."

Roche said he was aware of thermal and coking coal mines that had made "huge losses so far in 2012," and blamed the skills shortage, commodity markets, and the cost of doing business in Australia for the setbacks.

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