Bloomberg News

Rio Tinto to Pare Canadian Smelter Production After Lockout

January 03, 2012

(Updates with detail on lockout in third paragraph, comment from union in fourth.)

Jan. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Rio Tinto Group, the world’s third- largest mining company, said it will reduce production at a Canadian aluminum smelter by about one-third after locking out union workers overnight.

The Alma smelter can produce 438,000 tons a year in the province of Quebec, and London-based Rio Tinto said in a statement that other staff “will continue to operate the remaining capacity until further notice.”

The 755 members of Syndicat des Travailleurs de l’Aluminium d’Alma rejected the company’s final offer for a new labor contract and the old agreement lapsed at midnight.

The lockout “has been coming for a long time,” union President Marc Maltais told reporters in comments broadcast on the RDI network. “We are ready.”

Link to Statement: NSN LX4VGQ3H0JK0 <GO>

--Editors: Christine Maurus, Joe Sabo

To contact the reporter on this story: Greg Quinn in Ottawa at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sylvia Wier at

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