Nornickel, a producer of palladium, nickel, platinum and copper, has announced that it will continue to support its employees and regions of operations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The company has developed a new package of anti-pandemic initiatives totalling approximately RUB10 billion until the end of 2020.
These initiatives will focus on improving virus protection at work, employees’ support, assistance to regional healthcare, and support of small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs). The new package brings the financial commitment of Nornickel to fight against the COVID-19 to a total amount of RUB20 billion in 2020.
The pandemic has not had any material impact on the company’s operations largely owing to the anti-virus campaign launched in March 2020. Nonetheless, the epidemiological situation in some of regions of operations, specifically in Norilsk, is getting tense. The company has thus decided to step up its safety efforts.
Nornickel has transitioned most of its office employees to work from home, introduced additional prevention measures at production sites and continues to provide full support to its regions of operations and local communities. The company has purchased more than 160 000 coronavirus tests and over 100 000 express antibody tests, delivered two stationary (for Norilsk and Monchegorsk) and seven mobile labs, almost 400 thermal cameras and a large volume of various personal protection gear (including over 10 million protection masks). The Group through its subsidiaries has granted subsidies for the freight delivery to Norilsk to local SME customers, utility service subsidies for non-profit organisations, and has provided local entrepreneurs with personal protection gear and food packages.
Nornickel spent approximately RUB10.5 billion since the launch of the programme by the end of June. Protecting lives and health of the company’s employees and residents against the COVID-19 remains on top of Nornickel’s priorities. The company is providing full support to make sure that its cities of operation have all necessary medical equipment, medicines, and consumables. Furthermore, additionally Nornickel upon requests from the regional and local authorities provides regional healthcare with whatever they need.
The second package, which has been developed by the company, aims to prepare for a potential negative-case scenario should COVID-19 cases continue to rise. Nornickel has allocated towards this approximately RUB10 billion for the 2H20.
As the first step of the new programme, the company has allocated emergency aid to the city of Norilsk in response to a request from the city’s mayor. Nornickel, in particular, is arranging a delivery of CT scanner to Norilsk.
The pandemic and its impact on almost all aspects of people lives have driven the company to review its approach to operations. According to newly introduced health and safety standards, the health of the employees on sites is now monitored daily, facilities undergo regular disinfection and employees are provided with medical protection gear.
Special initiatives have been introduced for rotation workers, with the duration of rotation shifts extended, observation centres arranged or being built, and mandatory virus testing introduced.
Several digital services to support everyday life are being developed, including remote learning, healthcare treatment, retail and services, maintaining new safety standards across production sites, cities, airports, public transportation, and public spaces.
The company reiterates in full all its previous commitments to is partners, including social, sports, and cultural projects.
Vladimir Potanin, Nornickel’s President, commented: “The 2020 pandemic and its implications will require a considerable increase in the social spending. The company is committed to allocate additional support to protect its employees and improve the quality of life in the regions of operations, complete top-priority healthcare, educational and urban development projects, and support indigenous people.”
Read the article online at: https://www.globalminingreview.com/finance-business/21072020/nornickel-commits-rub20-billion-to-regions-of-operations-amid-covid-19-pandemic/