A Queensland miner has decided to cut hours instead of jobs, a move being praised by unions.
A Rockhampton union organiser yesterday congratulated QMAG Limited for its decision to keep workers on during over the Christmas period.
Earlier this week the Blackwater-based Curragh Mine announced its contract with Golding Contractors was to come to an end in December, putting about 200 workers in an uncertain position, The Bulletin reported.
However instead of cutting jobs, the roster at QMAG's Kunwarara mine site will be reduced from a seven-day, 24-hour operation to a five-day, 24-hour operation.
"We're relieved," Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union (AMWU) Rockhampton organiser Peter Lyon said.
"We praise the company for not laying people off and making all efforts to hold on to staff, especially coming up to Christmas.
"There's a lot of other people losing their jobs in the region at the moment."
While the move would mean a pay curt for some workers, the majority of employees decisions would stay the same, Lyon said.
A spokeswoman for the company said it was in discussions with its workforce about structural changes.
Changes would better align the mining activities with production requirements, she said.
"These changes are part of our process to continually review and improve our business," she said.
"The discussions are in respect of roster changes at the Kunwarara mine site.
"The Parkhurst plant continues to operate 24 hours a day in order to meet demand."
QMAG is one of the world's largest producers of deadburned, electrofused and calcined magnesia for the global refractory and chemical markets and also produces and markets a range of magnesite products.
Image: The Bulletin