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From the Desk of Xstrata Nickel's Unit Chair - February 2011
Published: February 14, 2011

Brothers and Sisters:

The Bargaining Committee will be presenting its' case for the Company not paying Nickel Bonus for the third and fourth quarter of 2009 on April 12th, 2011.

The Bargaining Committee was informed on February 8th that the Company had reported an operating profit for its' Nickel Operations division of $503 million dollars. The Company, however, has charged a $560 million dollar (pre-tax) impairment charge to its’ Araguaia nickel project in Brazil, which will result in a profit loss of $56 million dollars. This will result in tax savings of millions of dollars for Xstrata.

When put into context, the tactics of the Company doing this is disgraceful. The Sudbury workers have gone above and beyond to ensure the profitability and sustainability of the Company and this is our thanks.

We have reduced the cost of bringing a pound of nickel from $3.80 a pound in 2009 to $2.16 in 2010. We ramped up Nickel Rim to full production a full six months ahead of schedule. Metal production targets at Fraser Copper were met. The Smelter reached record production of 73,677 tons. This coupled with the fact that the price per pound of nickel has increased 48% over the previous year has allowed the Company to become a very lucrative operation.

We, the workers, achieved these milestones mining, milling and smelting the ore in an attempt to create a more profitable Company with the expectation of getting our share of the bounty. The Company's not inclined to share, it seems.

The Bargaining Committee will be challenging the decision by the Company to not pay out the Nickel Bonus for the second half of 2010 through a Direct Difference grievance.

In Solidarity,
Guy Desloges, Xstrata Nickel Unit Chair and
The Bargaining Committee - Jan Romo, Marcel Charron, Terry McCormick, Chris Browne

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