Ausmelt has announced that it will suspend operations at its smelter in Whyalla, South Australia.
According to the managing director Paul Abbott, the Whyalla operation has been made uneconomic by recent significant declines in zinc prices and a substantial increase in the price of coal which was the major fuel input into the process.
The plant will be kept on a care and maintenance basis in the hope that opportunities will emerge to re-open it in the future.
The company is currently investigating a range of alternative uses for the plant, however, these alternatives are not expected to lead to an early reopening.
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