Hastings Deering could cut more jobs

Hastings Deering said job losses could be in the offing as the company suffers from a ‘dramatic’ slowdown in the mining sector.

The comments come after the company, which services cat mobile plant equipment in most coal mines in the Bowen Basin, was unable to usher in a new employment agreement after 12 months of negotiations with workers.

Hastings Deering's managing director Dean Mehmet said the company may seek help from the Fair Work Commission in order to resolve the matter.

"Employee representatives, the AMWU and the company have worked tirelessly since the initial vote in November last year to produce a revised agreement that would have provided security for the company and its employees," Mehmet said.

"The agreement offered two years of certainty, giving us the ability to compete for business and deliver value to our customers. The wage rates, together with the terms, provided a highly competitive employment package."

However Brad Henson from the AMWU said Hastings had been informed the new EA would not be voted up by workers.

"The last document that went out… we told them we didn't think it would be accepted," Henson said.

"The employees are obviously unhappy… they (Hastings) would be better off focusing their energy on exploring different avenues to resolve that and finalise an agreement.”

The AMWU said the new agreements will remove minesite allowances and reduce other allowances from workers’ pay, which could amount to a 25 per cent cut from current pay.

Hastings has already let go of around 700 workers in Queensland over the past two years, and Mehmet said more job losses are likely.

Henson claims the company had always planned to implement cost cutting measures regardless of the EA outcome.

To keep up to date with Australian Mining, subscribe to our free email newsletters delivered straight to your inbox. Click here.