Gough finds places for laid-off staff

MARTA STEEMAN
Last updated 05:00 10/01/2014

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Christchurch heavy machinery firm Gough Group will lay off nearly 40 staff next week as a result of the cut in production at New Zealand's biggest goldmine.

Gough Group chief executive Karl Smith said OceanaGold had terminated its "alliance agreement" in which Gough staff repair and maintain OceanaGold's heavy equipment fleet at the Macraes goldmine in Central Otago.

"What it means is our 38-odd people will be disestablished on January 17," Smith said.

Goughs is offering to cover the costs of moving those staff if they were willing to fill vacancies around the country.

It has 30 to 40 positions in other places while most of the Gough staff working at Macraes live in the area.

Although the mining industry had been shrinking, work for Goughs was expanding in the infrastructure, forestry and power system sectors where there were jobs with the company.

They were in Christchurch, Wellington, Auckland, new Plymouth and Napier and Hamilton.

Goughs had been aware that OceanaGold was reviewing its contract.

"We have kept those positions open. We have consciously made a decision not to fill them till we could see what of the people from Macraes' mine site would be interested in taking them"

Most of the other contractors were also taking reductions or terminations.

Smith said the meeting on Tuesday evening with their staff had been positive but "clearly if you have friends and family it can be be a bit of a wrench".

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- BusinessDesk

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