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NUM opposed to any Sibanye job cuts

Sibanye said it was starting talks about possible job cuts at its Cooke 4 mine to boost profits.

NUM General Secretary Frans Baleni. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) is opposed to any moves to cut jobs at Sibanye Gold's Cooke 4 operation and could go on strike in protest, the union's boss said on Friday.

"We will fight any retrenchments through all legal means and will even resort to strike action if we have to," NUM General Secretary Frans Baleni told Reuters.

"They claim to be the most profitable gold mining company in South Africa, so how can they retrench?," he said.

South African-focused bullion producer Sibanye earlier said it was starting talks with unions and other stakeholders about possible job cuts at its Cooke 4 mine to boost profits and productivity.

Sibanye said it had entered "into section 189 consultations on the future of the Cooke 4 mine" - a reference to a legal requirement that companies must talk with organised labour and other affected parties in advance about potential layoffs.

Reuters reported on Thursday that Sibanye planned to cut up to 2,500 workers at Cooke 4, an operation near Johannesburg which the company recently acquired.

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