18/11/2008 - 10:27

GME cuts jobs, reduces project spending

18/11/2008 - 10:27

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GME Resources has pulled back on the planned expenditure on its NiWest Nickel Laterite Project, resulting in a number of redundancies to senior staff members.

GME Resources has pulled back on the planned expenditure on its NiWest Nickel Laterite Project, resulting in a number of redundancies to senior staff members.

GME managing director, Dave Varcoe will continue in his role on a reduced time basis after the company decided it was prudent to conserve cash given the current global economic circumstances.

GME chief operations officer, Brad Wynne will be leaving, as will the company's chief geologist and two junior geologists, making four redundancies in total.

Mr Wynne will also be replaced as company secretary with part time personnel.

Mr Wynne told WA Business News the company had deferred the project until the world markets improved.

"We're hopeful in the next 12 months the situation will improve and then we'll look at re-approaching the market for capital," Mr Wynne said.

The Como-based nickel mining company has conducted a pre-feasibility study over the last two years on the project, which is based north-east of Leonora and worth about $455 million, and will continue to evaluate opportunities for the development of the project.

It found the project contains high grade nickel laterite resources and had commenced feasibility studies on a large scale operation capabale of producing up to 35,000t a year which have now been suspended.

Historically, WA has been the only state to produce nickel, hosting the country's largest nickel reserves, with more than 90 per cent of total economic demonstrated resources.

Australia holds the largest share of the world's EDR with 37 per cent and exports more than $5.5 billion in nickel products each year, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In 2006, Australia was the world's third largest producer, accounting for 12 per cent of estimated global nickel output.

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