BUCHAREST, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Romanian zinc and lead maker Sometra, owned be Greece's Mytilineos (MYTr.AT), said on Wednesday it will temporarily halt production and dismiss 80 percent of its employees in response to falling metal prices.
"We will temporarily stop activity and we will oust 80 percent of our 1,050 employees because of the global crisis," said Sometra's spokesman Eugen Secmerean. "Zinc and lead prices fell dramatically and this causes us great losses."
On London Metal Exchange, lead MPB3 was bid at $1,150 a tonne, while zinc MZN3 was bid at $1,155 a tonne, both at about half of the prices registered in early 2008.
Secmerean said a resumption of production would depend on global market conditions.
Sometra produced 65,000 tonnes of zinc and 20,000 tonnes of lead last year.
In recent months, several industries across Romania have halted production to reduce the impact of the global cash shortage which has trimmed demand for their exports. (Reporting by Marius Zaharia; Editing by James Jukwey)