Glencore has announced the cessation of operations at the Mount Isa Mines, one of the world’s largest copper mines, in 2025. The multinational company will close underground operations at the Enterprise, X41, and Black Rock mines, along with the copper concentrator, affecting 1,200 workers. The Mount Isa Mines operation, established in 1924 and extracting zinc, silver, and lead, will see the Lady Loretta zinc mine, located 140km northwest of Mt Isa, also closing in 2025.
The decision has disappointed the company’s chief operating officer, Sam Strohmayr, who expressed a desire to provide affected workers and their families with ample time to prepare. Local MP Robbie Katter noted that approximately 1,100 local workers in the copper business, excluding fly-in-fly-out employees, could be impacted, affecting around 8% of Mt Isa’s adult population of about 13,000. Katter expressed skepticism about Glencore’s assertion that the mine had become unviable, citing previous instances where the company’s operations were extended by new ownership.