Endako Mine suspends operations

It will be a bleak Christmas for about 400 workers at the Endako Mine east of Burns Lake.

It will be a bleak Christmas for about 400 workers at the Endako Mine east of Burns Lake.

Thompson Creek Metals, which holds a 75 per cent stake in Endako, announced Wednesday that it will place the Endako molybdenum mine on temporary suspension effective December 31.

The reason, according to a company press release, is due to continued weakness in the molybdenum market.

About half of the salaried employees at the Endako Mine will be laid off, resulting in estimated severance costs of approximately $1.7 million. Hourly employees at the mine were notified today that their employment will be temporarily suspended in 60 days, and will remain so suspended while the mine is on temporary suspension.

“We expected that the operational improvements that we implemented in 2014 would have been sufficient to keep the Endako Mine operating profitably during this prolonged volatility in the molybdenum market, but as a result of the current and expected molybdenum price weakness in the near term, we have no other option but to place the mine on temporary suspension,” said Jacques Perron, President and Chief Executive Officer of Thompson Creek. “We will continue to closely monitor market conditions and re-evaluate the status of the mine as market conditions warrant.”

Thompson Creek continues to operate Mount Milligan, its open pit copper/gold mine north of Fort St. James.