Nickel miner Mincor Resources will let go of 50 workers from their current workforce near Kambalda, after changing their mining plan to maximise operations and refocus on new developments.
With a soft nickel price at multi-year lows, Mincor have decided to suspend capital development at the Miitel mine, and to only proceed with stoping operations at Miitel and Mariners .
Mincor said they expected to produce approximately 120,000 tonnes of nickel ore at 2.8 per cent between June and November 2015.
The company expects to meet their FY2015 production target of 8500 tonnes of nickel in ore.
Expectations of a strong near-term recovery in the price of nickel have led Mincor to suggest that it will review operations at Miitel and Mariners in the second half 2015, with a view to recommencing capital development and ramping up production.
Mincor said a key element of this new plan is that it is reversible at any time in line with improvements in the nickel price.
Mincor managing director David Moore said he deeply regretted the job losses, but changes were necessary in light of four years of falling prices.
“Our revised mining plan will optimise cash flows and allow us to re-build production at both mines in due course while giving us the scope to complete the drilling and evaluation of our four exciting new growth projects,” he said.
However, Moore was optimistic about the future prospects of nickel in 2015, suggesting price recovery would enable the company to perform well in the long term.
“Based on our strong ore reserve position and these new discoveries, the future outlook for Mincor remains compelling,” he said.
“Consensus forecasts for the nickel price are very strong and the changes announced today will give us a solid foundation on which to build our next decade of profitable nickel mining in Kambalda.”