Western Areas keeps Forrestania nickel exports on target

The Forrestania nickel operations. Image: Western Areas.

Western Areas is completing nickel production as planned, delivering concentrate to local and export customers as normal as it works under new coronavirus policies and procedures.

Under the health procedures, Western Areas has ceased fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workers who travel from interstate to work at the Forrestania nickel operation, due to the Western Australian border closure.

This represents a small number of the total Forrestania workforce, according to Western Areas.

These measures are in line with the directives from both the state and federal governments and health departments, to minimise the risk of an outbreak at mine sites.

The company has maintained its 2020 production guidance at this stage, but it is aware the situation is constantly evolving, and operations may be impacted in due course.

With approximately $181.4 million cash at bank at March 31 and no debt, Western Areas is confident it is well placed to emerge from the coronavirus pandemic in a strong position.

Managing director Dan Lougher said the company’s key priority was to protect the health and safety of its workforce while playing its part in limiting the potential spread of coronavirus.

“While our operations have not been impacted as yet, we are under no illusion that this is a rapidly changing situation and as such there is potential for operations to be impacted in the future,” Lougher said.

“We remain vigilant in this dynamic environment and our proactive engagement with customers, supplies and contractors has enabled us to maintain our operations in tandem with implementing measures to protect the wellbeing of our workforce.”

Western Areas will inform the market if any material impacts do occur as a result of the coronavirus.

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