Mining giants review Amcu's concerns

Amcu has raised concerns over the latest wage deal with Implats and Amplats.

FILE: Amcu-affiliated miners demonstrate in Marikana on the platinum belt in the North West where a strike in the sector has run since January. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - Impala Platinum (Implats) says it's considering concerns raised by the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) over the latest wage offer aimed at ending the crippling strike.

Both Implats and Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) yesterday confirmed that Amcu has submitted a response to the world's top three platinum producers.

Both companies say they have received the written response and are now reviewing its contents.

Around 70,000 Amcu members at Lonmin, Implats and Amplats went on strike in January demanding an entry level salary of R12,500.

It's hoped the strike on the North West platinum belt may come to an end soon after Amcu said last week it had reached an in principle agreement with the companies.

Implats spokesperson Johan Theron says negotiations are currently at a critical stage.

"I am quietly confident we will be able to resolve the strike."

Theron however says platinum companies are still approaching the negotiations with caution.

"There is still a risk that we can slip up at the last hurdle."

The strike has already had a negative impact on the country's economy and investor confidence and has been mentioned by ratings agency Standard & Poor's as one of the reasons South Africa's credit rating was downgraded.

Meanwhile, Mineral Resources Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi said on Tuesday that he's confident a wage agreement between Amcu and platinum producers will be signed soon.