Centennial Coal will cut 40 jobs and halt the operation of two NSW mines by Christmas.
Thai-owned Centennial Coal announced their Mannering and Airly Mines would be placed in ‘‘care and maintenance’’ from January but has already moved to wind down the two operations, The Newcastle Herald reported.
Centennial said about 40 workers from both mines would be made redundant.
Chief operating officer Steve Bracken the review of its operations comes after a drop in the price of thermal coal.
‘‘The industry is suffering from record high production costs, largely a result of the resources boom-driven competition for scarce resources, increasing wages and other input costs, but also including … increased government processes and charges,’’ he said.
“Both mines have struggled to make a positive contribution in their own right not only through the lower coal price but a combination of difficult mining conditions, poor coal quality and, in the case of Airly, transport costs have hindered the viability of these mines.”
‘In the current market, their losses can no longer be absorbed without negatively impacting on the group’s overall performance.’’
The move comes as another blow to the coal industry with many companies cutting jobs and production in recent months.
Xstrata announced it will be cutting 600 jobs across its Australia coal operations, Whitehaven Coal announced that it will suspend all operations at its Sunnyside mine 'indefinitely', while Yancoal said it will close two mines down in the Hunter Valley over Christmas.
The slowdown in operation has been blamed for the capacity cut of Port Waratah Coal Services T4 coal loader on Kooragang Island from 70 tp 25 million tonnes.
PWCS chief executive Hennie du Plooy said companies advised they no longer expected to ship as much coal.