(CNN) -- The world's largest mining company on Wednesday reported a sharp drop in profits, just two weeks after announcing thousands of job cuts.
BHP Billiton CEO Marius Kloppers said his firm was in a better position to cope after recent job cuts.
The Australia-based BHP Billiton said it experienced a 56.6 percent plunge in first-half profits, citing an indefinite suspension of its nickel operation and the failure of a proposed buyout of a rival Rio Tinto among other reasons.
Last month, BHP said the deteriorating outlook in the global nickel markets would force the company to cut about 6,000 jobs.
BHP spokeswoman Samantha Evans said 70 percent of the layoffs will hit company contractors. Additional cuts in coal production could come in the second half of the year.