Illawarra Coal has announced 36 jobs will be cut as part of an ‘‘organisational review’’ of the business.
The company said the job losses were phase one of the review, with the next phase involving ‘‘operational activities’’.
The Illawarra Mercury understands contractor and head office positions will be affected.
Illawarra Coal, which is owned by BHP Billiton, employs about 2200 workers and operates three underground coalmines in the region – Appin, West Cliff and Dendrobium, as well as two coal preparation plants.
A company spokeswoman said the job losses would be experienced across the business and failed to rule out future cuts.
‘‘It would be inappropriate to speculate at this point on the future outcomes of the review,’’ she said.
The spokeswoman said the review was being undertaken in response to the company’s ‘‘ongoing focus to ensure competitiveness and viability of the business’’.
The full review will be completed by June30.
Illawarra Coal asset president Troy McDonald said it was a difficult period for the company’s employees and contractors.
‘‘We will work closely with those who will be affected and provide the appropriate support services,’’ he said.
‘‘These workforce changes are essential to secure the future competitiveness of our business and will ensure we have the right number of people doing the right work to support our operations.
‘‘Illawarra Coal will treat all employees fairly and with respect, and ensure that they are kept informed.’’