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Copper June 29, 2020 08:30:30 PM

World's Largest Copper Producer Halts Chilean Smelter and Refinery

Paul Ploumis
ScrapMonster Author
The move will take out nearly 400 people out of operations from the smelter and refinery.
World's Largest Copper Producer Halts Chilean Smelter and Refinery

SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): Chile-based Codelco- the world’s largest copper producer announced its decision to shut operations at its Chuquicamata copper smelter and refinery, in order to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 among its workers. The mine had recently reported death of third mine worker.

The company press release noted that the Chuquicamata Division has determined to stop its smelting operations, given the complex situation experienced by the Antofagasta Region and the city of Calama due to Covid-19 spread. The new measure is aimed at ensuring the safety and health of its staff and is transitory in nature.

The move will take out nearly 400 people out of operations from the smelter and refinery. The demobilization of these personnel will be carried out progressively, in accordance with end-of-shift timings. The company’s mine operations will be limited to minor operations and preventive maintenance activities.

Nicolás Rivera, General Manager of the Division noted that the proactive action will help the company, the Chuquicamata society and the country to tackle the difficult situation over the coming weeks. The company will focus more on the more critical productive areas, he added.

Incidentally, Codelco is the first major copper producer to shut operations due to rapid rise in Covid-19 cases in the country.

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