Kandos plant closure, Australia

Kandos plant closure, Australia
Published: 11 July 2011

Some 98 employees at the Kandos cement works will lose their jobs as Cement Australia closes the factory over the next four months.

Employees were told of the decision in a meeting on Thursday morning.

The cement works is the biggest employer in Kandos and the closure revived bitter memories of a similar experience with the closure of Boral’s Portland works 20 years ago.

Cement Australia CEO and managing director Chris Leon said it had been a challenge for the Kandos operation to remain viable due to a combination of dated, inefficient technology and high fixed costs.

“Despite almost $10 million invested in 2007 to improve the plant, attracting and retaining high quality, experienced professionals to Kandos also continues to be a challenge as the next wave of skills shortage looms,” he said.

“Finally, the Kandos plant is also considerable distance from the market it serves and this unfortunately further undermines its competitiveness.”

Cement Australia said employees would be supported through the transition and would receive their full entitlements.

Thirty four people will be offered another role within the company, which will continue its manufacturing operations in Gladstone and Bulwer Island in Queensland and Railton, Tasmania.