Platinum Strike Starts Causing Irreversible Damage

Platinum Strike Starts Causing Irreversible Damage

The largest platinum producers, Anglo American Platinum, Impala Platinum and Lonmin, introduced a joint statement in which they said strike by the Association of Mining and Construction Union (AMCU) has started causing irreversible damage to the mining giants.

The sales loss has gone over R10 billion. It was on January 23 that more than 70,000 members of the biggest union went on a strike and till now no solution has been found to end the strike.

The strike has made workers to see a loss of more than 4.4 billion rand in the form of wages. "Mines and shafts are becoming unviable; people are hungry; children are not going to school; businesses are closing and crime in the platinum belt is increasing", said the producers.

As per the demands of the union, basic wage of employees should be increased by more than double within three years. Current minimum pay is 5,000 rand to 6,000 rand per month and as per the demand, it will be 12,500 rand per month.

South Africa's inflation rate was 5.9% in February, but the producers have offered pay increase by 9%. The producers have termed the extended strike to be an unprecedented one and it has been causing such losses that are irreparable. The platinum supplies in the store have also decreased and the price of the metal is expected to rise in the international market due to lower supply.

The impact of strike is faced not only by the companies, but as well as by the employees, suppliers, local businessmen and community. The loss of R10-billion in terms of revenue and around R4.4-billion in earnings of employees is not the complete loss.

Amplats Chief Executive Chris Griffith, Implats Chief Executive Terence Goodlace and Lonmin Chief Executive Ben Magara said the companies are still open for talk, but no such talks are taking place.

They further affirmed that they have been told by employees that they wish to return to work. Therefore, they need to come up with a way by which workers are able to do what they want to. There is a need to come out with the solution, said the producers.

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