Northam’s Zondereinde
mine in the North West
province
 
Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 19 October 2010 – A six-week strike over wages at Northam Platinum’s Zondereinde mine in the North West province has ended, and the company estimates that the action cost it R380 million in revenue losses.

“We have agreed with the members to call off the strike now,” NUM’s chief negotiator at Northam, Zwelitsha Tantsi, told Reuters. Operations were due to resume today.

More than 8 000 members of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) had been on strike since September, after rejecting Northam’s 9.5% pay rise offer. They were demanding 15%.

The NUM said the miners had accepted a 10 to13% improved pay offer, with the exact figure depending on each worker’s category. NUM spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said the union had also agreed to an increase in living allowance to R1 800 rand from R1 600, while workers in the company’s hostels would for the first time receive an allowance of R600 per month.

“This is the biggest victory we have achieved at Northam,” Seshoka told Reuters.

Northam said separately in its annual report seen by Reuters that a planned capital raising for its Booysendal project, for which it plans issuing a convertible bond, would be accelerated from June 2011. The project would cost R3.6 billion.

The Booysendal project will add 162 000ozpa of PGMs to Northam, which raised its output in the 2010 financial year by 6.3% to 321 475oz.

The company added that capex at the key Zondereinde mine was expected to be around R340 million, mainly for a mine deepening project.