Savannakhet Province Declares Sepon Mine a ‘Green Zone’

October 06, 2021

Savannakhet Province has now declared Sepon Mine a ‘Green Zone’ after more than 30 days with no evidence of COVID-19 infection on site.

In an outbreak detected on 22 August, 33 persons, including 25 contractors, and eight LXML employees tested positive to COVID-19. All cases were linked to the original source of infection with transport contractors, and many cases were detected off site through LXML’s COVID-19 testing and quarantine protocols.

People who tested positive to COVID-19 were placed in approved treatment facilities, and all have now recovered and been safely discharged after 14-days quarantine at a government quarantine center and 14-days at home. Since the first cases were identified, LXML has conducted over 12.500 COVID-19 tests on LXML employees and contractors with no further evidence of positive cases. LXML has also provided COVID-19 tests for local communities.

While extended lockdowns and restrictions have impacted our lives, keeping us away from families, and from doing things we enjoy, community transmission in Lao PDR is continuing, and LXML is consistently complying with COVID-19 restrictions to ensure the safety of employees, contractors and communities.

LXML introduced strict hygiene, quarantine, tracing and testing measures aligned with the Lao Government’s prevention orders to quickly identify the source of spread and isolate potential cases. The company immediately introduced a site lockdown and cooperated closely with authorities at the district, provincial, and central level as well as local contractors to prevent spread.

Thanks to the support of Savannakhet Health Department, approximately 5,000 LXML contractors and employees (99% of the workforce) have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. A vaccination certificate is now compulsory for access to Sepon site, and in Vientiane and Savannakhet Offices.

LXML is committed to working closely in cooperation with the Lao Government to enhance capacity to prevent spread of COVID-19. LXML has provided COVID-19 test kits, equipment and financial support to Vilabouly District to establish a field hospital, and Savannakhet Province to upgrade quarantine facilities, as well as a PCR machine and associated equipment to support the province’s efforts to protect the population from COVID-19. To date, LXML has provided $US450,000 in support to the Lao Government for COVID-19 prevention and response efforts.

Since operations commenced in 2003, LXML has contributed over US$1.5 billion in direct revenue to the Lao Government, in additional to hundreds of millions of dollars in indirect benefits through community development, employment, training, and support for local business in Savannakhet Province and Lao PDR.

Sepon Gold-Copper operation’s administration centre, Vilabouly District, Savannakhet Province. ສູນບໍລິຫານໂຄງການຄຳ-ທອງເຊໂປນ, ທີ່ເມືອງວິລະບູລີ, ແຂວງສະຫວັນນະເຂດ