23 Dec 2015

New Caledonia's SLN announces cuts

2:01 pm on 23 December 2015

New Caledonia's SLN nickel company has announced plans to save about 90 million US dollars a year to cope with a severe nickel crisis.

The head of SLN, Jerome Fabre, says the company doesn't expect the nickel price to pick up before the end of 2017 after it slumped by more than 40 percent this year.

Mr Fabre says because of the slowdown of the Chinese economy and the large nickel reserves, SLN will this year lose more than 270 million US dollars.

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Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades

He says changes to the production will mean that the SLN plant in Noumea will only make ferronickel, allowing for lower investments than planned.

Mr Fabre says while there are no dismissals planned, in some cases jobs might be lost.

In October, the SLN parent company put off plans to build a new power plant

The proposed power plant at Doniambo was to cost almost one billion US dollars and replace one deemed to cause too much pollution.

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