Implats workers mull wage offer

Implats workers mull wage offer

JOHANNESBURG – The world’s second biggest platinum producer, South Africa’s Implats, has made a fresh wage offer to workers, the company and the country’s biggest mining union said on Friday.

Workers will consider the offer, which the two sides agreed not to disclose, before talks resume next Thursday, National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) negotiator Frans Baleni told Reuters. “There has been a small revised offer from the company, with the help of a mediator, so we’ve agreed that we will consult with our members,” Baleni said.”I’m optimistic that we might settle this.”A company official confirmed a new offer had been made, but declined further comment.Workers earlier this week rejected a previous offer to raise wages 6 – 6,5 per cent.Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd employs 31 600 people but only around 17 000 are represented by unions.Last week, wage talks with the world’s biggest platinum producer Anglo Platinum Ltd reached deadlock, prompting the NUM to call in mediators.Union and company officials were not immediately available on Friday to comment.Angloplat employs 46 700 workers, of which around 26 000 are represented by unions.The platinum market is sensitive to changes in supply since it is about in balance after several years of deficit.A strike last year against the two biggest platinum producers, which account for around two thirds of global supply, sent platinum prices surging.Platinum prices rallied to a new 15-month peak this week after more speculative buying.-Nampa-Reuters”There has been a small revised offer from the company, with the help of a mediator, so we’ve agreed that we will consult with our members,” Baleni said.”I’m optimistic that we might settle this.”A company official confirmed a new offer had been made, but declined further comment.Workers earlier this week rejected a previous offer to raise wages 6 – 6,5 per cent.Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd employs 31 600 people but only around 17 000 are represented by unions.Last week, wage talks with the world’s biggest platinum producer Anglo Platinum Ltd reached deadlock, prompting the NUM to call in mediators.Union and company officials were not immediately available on Friday to comment.Angloplat employs 46 700 workers, of which around 26 000 are represented by unions.The platinum market is sensitive to changes in supply since it is about in balance after several years of deficit.A strike last year against the two biggest platinum producers, which account for around two thirds of global supply, sent platinum prices surging.Platinum prices rallied to a new 15-month peak this week after more speculative buying.-Nampa-Reuters

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