Iluka Hit By Strike In Sierra Leone

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

A little bit of news management yesterday from beach sand minerals producer, Iluka ahead of a quarterly review and investor update today.

The company yesterday separated a significant news development from that update which will effectively add to the importance of the review and comments to investors by management on today’s call.

Iluka told the ASX yesterday that its full-year rutile production will be impacted by a peaceful unlawful strike at its mine in Sierra Leone.

The stoppage has seen operations have been halted and management is talking to employees and union officials about “the rationale for the strike action”, Iluka said in its statement.

As well the mine’s management has also spoken to government and asked Sierra Leone’s Minister for Labour to meet with employees yesterday.

Rutile mining at the site was 93.4 thousand tonnes to September 30, and could achieve a maximum of about 135 thousand tonnes “dependent on when the strike action is resolved”. Further details will be provided in today’s September quarter review and investor conference.

“Iluka is focused on achieving an appropriate resolution to the strike action and will keep the market informed of progress toward that resolution.”

Iluka shares eased 1.2% to $8.54 yesterday – if the news is poor today there could be a larger reaction, but if the strike is ending the shares should maintain their value.

But that will depend on overnight trading which is starting to get a little fragile on Wall Street.

The market was softened up yesterday with news of the surprise stoppage, now for the company’s extended explanation and other details today – a second bite at the story so to speak.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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