AGL offers Loy Yang A redundancies

AGL is offering a round of voluntary redundancies at Loy Yang A. file photograph

Michelle Slater

AGL is offering a round of voluntary redundancies at coal and gas plants including Loy Yang A in an attempt to cost cut as the company faces challenges in the marketplace.

The company is in the midst of taking expressions of interest from workers covered under enterprise agreements at its Loy Yang, Torrens Island and Bayswater plants.

AGL stated the decision was necessary to “address the fundamental shift in the market and operating conditions and the resulting financial challenge facing AGL”.

“We are also working hard to identify other areas of cost saving across our business,” the company said in a statement.

“Earnings pressures are increasing during this period of challenging market and operating conditions.”

It comes as the company had reported a $2 billion loss for the 2021-22 financial year.

Any offers of redundancy following the expression of interest – including the departure date of the employee – will be at the discretion of the company.

AGL stated it needed to retain the “right skills, capabilities and resources” to meet the “challenges we face”.

CFMMEU Victorian mining division secretary Geoff Dyke estimated the voluntary redundancies would mean the loss of about 40 workers at Loy Yang A.

Mr Dyke said he feared AGL could be forcing redundancies if it did not get enough volunteers, or would not be replacing workers who left or retired into the future.

He said the union would also be making sure any cuts would not impact site safety or plant reliability.

“At this stage, no one is being forcibly made redundant, but it still reduces the amount of job opportunities in the Latrobe Valley,” Mr Dyke said.

“We hope there is some common sense in how they manage this cost reduction and we will be looking out for safety and that workers are not being overloaded.”

AGL had stressed that “safety continues to be our key priority”.

“To succeed and be sustainable now and in the future, we must remain safe, well managed, operate as efficiently as possible, and continually improve and adapt,” the company statement said.