SUDBURY, Ont. (CP) -- Layoff notices have gone out to 686 permanent employees in both union and salaried positions at Xstrata Nickel in Sudbury, Ont.
The company, formerly known as Falconbridge, also says it is immediately closing its Craig and Thayer-Lindsley operations which had reached the end of their production.
The company's chief executive, Ian Pearce, said the company "is taking proactive and decisive measures during challenging times."
A three-day stoppage of operations was initiated Monday to allow the restructuring to occur.
The company is placing the Fraser mine on care and maintenance, while cutting the Strathcona Mill operations to two shifts from four. As well Xstrata is putting development of the Fraser Morgan operations on hold until further notice.
Production from the company's Sudbury smelter is not expected to be affected as shortfalls from the Sudbury production cuts will be made up for with concentrates from the company's Nickel Rim South and Xstrata Nickel Australasia operations.
The cuts reflect tough times in the Canadian mining industry, as companies cut jobs and shut down mines in reaction to falling prices and slumping demand for copper, zinc, aluminum and other primary metals.