Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Mosaic to shutter potash mine

Mosaic Co. is closing its potash mine neara Colonsay, Sask., until the end of the year because potash prices are low.

Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan closed a mine in New Brunswick earlier this year for the same reason.

About 330 employees at the Colonsay-area mine received temporary layoff notices from Mosaic, which is based in Plymouth, Minnesota.

Mosaic, Agrium and Potash Corp of Saskatchewan are partners in a government-approved cartel to price potash for export.

The three are awaiting a move by China which has been setting global prices in recent years.

Prices tumbled two years ago when another cartel between Russia and Belarus broke down, sparking a price war. A new shareholder in Russia’s Uralkali said this week it wants that cartel to be re-established.

Spot potash prices in the U.S. Corn Belt tumbled to a nine-year low this year.