steelmaker BlueScope Steel Ltd. will reduce production of
cold-rolled, metal-coated and painted steel at its Western Port
facility in a bid to cut costs amid lackluster demand.
"We will keep all currently
operating lines and assets open at Western Port to provide
flexibility and allow for additional throughput when demand
improves," Mark Vassella, chief executive officer of
BlueScopes Australian and New Zealand operations, said in
a statement Jan. 14.
The cut in production levels is
expected to commence around mid-March. The move will have
little or no impact on existing supply arrangements for the
companys domestic customers, BlueScope said.
As part of the restructuring,
about 110 employees and 60 contractors will lose their jobs
over the coming months, Vassella said.
The cost to implement this
change is estimated at around Australian $17 million ($17.9
million), but it will be recovered within one year through
ongoing improvements to the operating cost base, he said.
BlueScope will start the
consultation phase with employees and union representatives to
best manage the transition, it said.
To assist employees in affected
areas, a range of flexible options will be provided. This
includes the offer of voluntary redundancy, a job substitution
process and outplacement services through a dedicated job
center, the company said.
A version of this article was first
published by AMM sister publication Steel