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Prime Minister, Hon. Bruce Golding has congratulated the staff and management of Jamalco for the teamwork that is allowing the company to maintain viability and break production records during a global economic downturn.
“Not only is Jamalco still in operation, but you are breaking levels and achieving levels of performance that even in less stressful times you did not achieve. This plant has been through many crises before and the workers have been an important part of the effort to take it through the crisis,” the Prime Minister said.
He was speaking at a workforce recognition ceremony at the Jamalco head office in Clarendon on Friday, August 28, following the opening of a 2.5-kilometre conveyor system at a mine in Manchester.
“The workers made an enormous contribution and must share in the success and recognition that must be given to that success. I was impressed at how focused and how motivated they were; how purpose driven they were. Every person seemed to have a clear vision of what the company is to achieve and they knew the contribution they had to make to that achievement. That is management, that is organisation, that is teamwork at its best,” he said.
The Prime Minister cautioned that the team must be vigilant as the industry was extremely fickle. “The ferociousness of the metals market is not going to end, it is going to continue. Jamalco has demonstrated that at this time, they are among the fittest.the investment in new technology, the expansion of capacity that has to continue, the investment in human resources, to make sure that our workers continue to be as good as the best and better than the rest,” he said.
Thanking Prime Minister Golding and the Jamalco workers, President of Alcoa, Latin America and the Caribbean, Frank Feder, said: “The bauxite alumina industry was going through a depression and we didn’t have a plan to go forward, but what I know is that in January, instead of 3,200 tonnes, it was something bigger. Your safety record, compared to the global Alcoa system, started to be absolutely stellar, your engagements in the Bravo and Action Programmes, so important to Alcoa, in terms of citizenship, started to increase. Every visit I made to the refinery I saw an improvement, a real improvement.”
“That gave me the immense confidence to go and sit with the leadership of Alcoa back in New York and more importantly, to sit with Prime Minister Golding and talk about the future of Jamalco. Today, this is the only refinery open in the North and Latin America,” he added.
Managing Director of Jamalco, Jerome Maxwell, said that the current fourth place ranking seemed impossible two years ago, when the company was at the bottom of the rankings. The team goal now is to become even better.
Executive Vice President of the Alcoa Group, Bernt Reitan, described the achievements of Jamalco as being “outstanding and first class.” He said that Alcoa was a world leader on safety and that Jamalco was on the best end of the company. The next challenge, he noted, was to have cheaper sources of energy.
The company, which achieved the landmark safety record of 5 million man hours without a work day being lost, is achieving higher standards than it did in its 50-year history.

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