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‘Mining plan will only work if signatories follow up with action’

The Chamber of Mines, govt & unions signed a 10-point plan aimed at minimising job losses.

FILE. The deal, which was signed on Monday, includes a number of proposals on how to strengthen the mining industry. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Mining analyst Peter Major says a 10-point plan signed by the Chamber of Mines, government and unions, aimed at minimising job losses, will only work if the signatories follow up with action.

The deal, which was signed on Monday, includes a number of proposals on how to strengthen the mining industry.

It also includes a plan for platinum to be held as a central reserve asset in South Africa.

Major says the document is just a piece of paper until action is taken.

"We will only know if it's worth the paper it's written on if everybody follows up with action. And because we've had so many negative actions for 20 years, we're really going to need 20 years of continuous positive actions to get us back where we used to be."

The deal also includes proposals on how to strengthen the industry.

LISTEN: Analysts in the mining industry Peter Major and CEO of the Chamber of Mines, Roger Baxter, weighed in on the jobs task team set up by the Department of Mineral Resources.

Meanwhile, South Africa's largest platinum mining union says it's not ready to sign the deal as it still needs to consult its members.

Amcu Deputy President Sanele Myeza says the union decided not to sign the deal because its members have not yet finished commenting on it, but supports it in principal.

"We are fully behind the process, we've been part of the process all the way. But you'll imagine that our membership is so big we have to take full and proper mandate from our members before we're in a position to put pen to paper."

Deputy President of the South African Mining Development Association, Peter Tamane, says government must lead the implementation of the deal.

"Without the support of the regulator, I don't think these interventions will go a long way."

The task team says the agreement lays out a plan for how to manage retrenchments and they aim to decrease more than 11,700 jobs at risk.

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