Sunday, February 10, 2013
Rio Tinto Culls 350 Positions at Argyle
The company has re-prioritized construction activities at its underground mine at Argyle, the world's largest producer of pink diamonds, which will effectively delay the construction of a second underground crusher for the project. "As we reach the final stages of completion of our underground block cave at Argyle, we have decided to delay any construction that is not required to bring the underground mine on stream,'' said Kim Truter, managing director of Argyle Diamond Mine. "All our resources will focus on the ramp-up to the first production from the underground block cave, which will commence in a few weeks, followed by official commissioning of the block cave in April.''
The jobs lost are contractor positions that were filled to build and install the second crusher, which is needed when the underground mine hits its full capacity.
Rio Tinto has been vocal in its concerns about the high-cost environment of doing business in Australia and has been conducting a company-wide review to cut costs across its operations.
The miner is hoping to extract savings globally of more than $5 billion (AUD 4.8 billion) from operating and support costs by the end of next year. It is also slashing $1 billion from exploration and evaluation work this year.