Many in Sudbury feel a merger between the two local mining companies would have been best
It has been 10 years since the foreign takeovers of Sudbury’s two homegrown mining companies. And the debate continues over whether or not this has tarnished the Nickel Capital over the last decade.
Vale — then known as CVRD — officially took over Inco on Oct. 24, 2006, three months after Falconbridge was bought by Swiss-based Xstrata.John Fera was president of Steelworkers 6500 when Inco became Vale in 2006.
He says the Brazilian company promised to make things better — but that hasn’t happened.
“It doesn’t seem to be the family atmosphere it used to be. I mean we had our fights with Inco and Falconbridge, but when the fight was over, the fight was over,” he says. “I don’t see our workplaces being better. I don’t see our workplaces being safe than before these people came.”
‘Lots of unknowns’
Sudbury MPP Rick Bartolucci was the Minister of Northern Development and Mines back in 2006. He says he worked hard behind the scenes to make sure Sudbury got the best deal, although he was criticized at the time for not publicly advocating for Sudbury.
“There was lots of unknowns, so it was just normally that people, including me, had concerns and wanted to ensure that we did was in the best interest of Ontario.” Many to this day feel the city would have been better off if the mines had stayed in local hands, but Bartolucci doesn’t see any point in speculating.
“To surmise what might have been really is counter productive, because we don’t know,” Bartolucci says. The retired politician says that, over time, Sudburians will feel just as much pride in the names Vale and Glencore, as they used to in Falconbridge and Inco.
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