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DBCB closes second mine within a year
Loss and inability to sell the mine push De Beers to take immediate action
By: Diamond World News Service
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Jan 23 2006 12:00AM
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Reference: 171  

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De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCB) announced the immediate closure of its Koffiefontein Mine in the Free State Province of South Africa on January 20, 2006. The mine has been operating at a significant loss since 2001. Recent attempts to sell the mine were also unsuccessful.

The company stated that five of the companys seven mines in South African are operating at a loss. This is the second South African mine closure for DBCM within an year. In August it stopped operations at its oldest mine, the Kimberley diamond mine. In line with mining legislation, the DBCM has formally given 14 days notice to the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME). The Company’s mining license expires on 4 February, 2006

DBCM is beginning consultations with the 329 employees and the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) to achieve an agreement that will limit the effects of job losses. The agreement could include retraining workers for work in other sectors. The Koffiefontein Mine opened in 1870 following the discovery of diamonds in South Africa in 1866.

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