CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC – Following New Government Restrictions in Mexico, Newmont Safely Ramping Down Peñasquito Operations
Following New Government Restrictions in Mexico, Newmont Safely Ramping Down Peñasquito Operations
Apr 1st 2020
DENVER–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Newmont Corporation (NYSE: NEM, TSX: NGT) (Newmont or the Company) announced today that following new, Coronavirus-related restrictions by the government of Mexico, the Company is taking steps towards a safe and orderly ramp down of operations at the Peñasquito mine in the state of Zacatecas.
Yesterday, Mexico’s federal government published a decree mandating the temporary suspension of all non-essential activities until April 30 as part of a nationwide effort to help slow the global pandemic. At this time, mining has not been deemed an essential activity under the decree and the Company is engaging with the government to understand the intended impacts of the decree on operations. Peñasquito will work closely with local governments, neighboring communities, employees, unions and contractors to ensure a safe and orderly ramp down that complies with the federal government’s directives.
“Whilst Newmont currently has no confirmed cases of COVID-19, we have proactively implemented rigorous and wide-ranging controls at all of our sites around the globe to protect our workforce and neighboring communities from contracting or transmitting the disease,” said Tom Palmer, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We will, of course, comply with Mexico’s latest directive while engaging with the government to gain further clarity regarding important activities that may continue at the mine. In the meantime, we will ensure Peñasquito remains well-positioned to safely and efficiently ramp up operations in a timely manner once the government’s directive is lifted.”
This includes maintaining critical safety, environmental management, infrastructure maintenance and security activities, while continuing to provide essential community support.
The Company is currently unable to determine the extent to which ramp down activities will impact Peñasquito’s production and costs for 2020.
Over the last several weeks at Peñasquito, Newmont has implemented a number of protective measures including:
- Temperature and other screening before entering the site
- Interpersonal distancing at work and during transport
- Critical workers, only, allowed at site; remote work from home
- Closing offices in Mexico City, Monterrey and Zacatecas
- Higher-risk employees (over 60, pregnant, chronic health conditions) remaining at home
- Education campaigns with communities and employees about preventing transmission
- Donating protective equipment and 500 COVID-19 detection tests to Zacatecas authorities
- Donating sanitation kits to local communities to prevent infection
More information on Newmont’s proactive efforts to protect its people, neighboring communities and business may be found here.