Glencore has revealed that it will reduce contained zinc metal mine production across its operations in Australia, South America and Kazakhstan by 500 000 tpa, or a third of its annual zinc production.

This is to preserve the value of Glencore‘s reserves in the ground while zinc and lead prices remain low and do not correctly value the scarce nature of the resources.

These changes will reduce fourth quarter 2015 mine production by approximately 100 000 t of contained zinc metal.

Glencore‘s operations at Lady Loretta in Australia and Iscaycruz in Peru will be suspended. Operations at George Fisher and McArthur River in Australia, as well as various mine operations in Kazakhstan will reduce production levels.

Glencore remains positive about the medium and long-term outlook for zinc, lead and silver prices. “This decision will ensure that our zinc operations are sustainable well into the future, providing jobs in the communities where we operate and returns to shareholders,” the company said in a statement.

“This decision has not been taken lightly because we recognise that the changes, although temporary, will unfortunately affect employees at our operations.  In the coming days we will engage with all employees and put in place support services to assist people who may be affected as a result of these changes.”

Current production status

Operation Estimated annual reduction (kt zinc metal)
George Fisher & Lady Loretta (Mt Isa) 245
McArthur River 135
Other zinc (South America) 80
Kazzinc 40
Group change 500
Estimated annual reduction (kt lead metal)
Group change 100

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