No guarantee for Xstrata workers

Xstrata Coal will offer employment help to the 174 workers affected by the planned 2010 closure of its United Collieries mine in the Hunter Valley, but can make no promises.

Xstrata Coal will offer employment help to the 174 workers affected by the planned 2010 closure of its United Collieries mine in the Hunter Valley, but can make no promises, company spokesperson James Rickard told MINING DAILY.

“We will be making employees aware of other opportunities in the Hunter Valley area, but we can’t provide guarantees,” Rickard said.

“It is a matter of trying to find appropriate opportunities as they arrive. “But we just want to be up-front with our people now to let them know to start planning for March 2010.”

Rickard said that voluntary redundancy package will be offered to the affected employees.

Xstrata last Friday announced that it had exhausted all of the economically recoverable underground reserves at United Collieries, 15 km west of Singleton, and that the mine will likely be placed on care and maintenance in March next year.

In Friday’s statement Xstrata said that the first round of redundancies would start in September, affecting 40 mine employees, eight administrative staff and 20 contractors.

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