Due to the interruption of crude oil supplies to its Falcondo operation in the Dominican Republic, FALCONBRIDGE has announced a 30% reduction in ferronickel output. A general strike in Venezuela has forced that country's oil supplier, Petroleos de Venezuela, to declare force majeure. The plant will operate at reduced capacity to conserve fuel at least until Dec. 27.
Falcondo has an annual production capacity of 30,000 tonnes of nickel contained in ferronickel. When operating at that rate, the plant goes through 320,000 barrels of crude oil per month, all of which usually comes from the Venezuelan supplier. Production for 2002 and 2003 are expected to be 22,500 tonnes and 28,000 tonnes respectively.
For further information contact either Caroline Casselman 416-956-5791 or Denis Couture 416-956-5706 in the public affairs office. The company's web site is at www.falconbridge.com