DOMINICAN REPUBLIC FALCONBRIDGE DOMINICANA, a unit of Toronto-based XSTRATA NICKEL, has suspended operations at its ferronickel producer due to poor market conditions. The Falcondo plant has a capacity of 29,000 t/y of nickel in ferronickel.
Xstrata says the shutdown will last four months during which time the furnace will be repaired and other critical maintenance tasks undertaken. During this time, the plant will be switched from oil to coal power. Development of the Loma Miranda project, a higher-grade mining area, will continue and ultimately extend the life of the operation.
The company will continue to maintain rural roads, support cultural, sports and other community actives, and continue to contribute to the funding of the Falcondo Foundation. More than 90% of the full-time workforce will remain on the payroll during the suspension.
Production is expected to resume by the end of 2008. Follow the progress of the work at www.Xstrata.com.