Mining firm Goldfields Ghana is to sack about 1,500 of its employees.
According to Accra-based Citi FM, the retrenchment is expected to affect the majority of its miners at the Tarkwa mine.
Goldfields Ghana’s Vice President and Head of Corporate Affairs David Johnson who confirmed the retrenchment exercise explained that the mining model of the firm has changed from owner mining operation to contractor operations.
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He explained further that it will operate at a loss if it goes on with its previous model.
”We are changing our business model from an owner binder to the contract binder, previously Goldfields acquired and maintained the mining fleets. Now what we are doing right now in 2017, our mining fleet has changed and will need to be replaced now looking at the types of mines that we have which is five to six years of active mining, if we were to pump that money into fleet replacement we will not actually be able to recruit that money back because we are talking of a huge capital investment here.”
“So now we have to look at our options. You have a contracted miner on the side who has fleets already and that is new and can be more efficient so that has actually influenced decision, the fact that we have an engine mining fleet and also a relatively limited life supply,” he added.
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This is the second time in three years the mining firm has embarked on such a massive retrenchment exercise.
In 2014 it laid off about 400 of its workforce over similar concerns.
According to Johnson, the retrenchment will affect a number of its departments.
”Our mining department and our HME which is the Heavy Mining Equipment provides that we maintain our fleet, those aspects of our business are being given to our contractors.”
The layoffs will take effect this month December 2017.