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NUM: Coal strike will continue

About 30,000 coal mineworkers are on strike after months of negotiations over wages & working conditions.

FILE: The union warned that the strike would have a negative impact on investment. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said on Friday that its five-day strike in the coal sector would continue due to an impasse with mining group Glencore, dashing hopes that it was on the verge of ending.

"This morning when we were supposed to reconvene, there was one outstanding company which has done nothing and that is Glencore. They are the ones holding the whole process to ransom," said Peter Bailey, NUM's chief coal sector negotiator.

About 30,000 coal mineworkers affiliated to NUM are on strike after months of negotiations over wages and working conditions.

The union warned that the strike would have a negative impact on investment and has urged mine bosses to present a better wage offer if they want miners to go back to work.

The union is demanding a R1,000 increase for lower category workers, while the companies are offering berween R300 and R600.

Meanwhile, Eskom has warned that the strike by workers in the coal sector will only restart load-shedding if the work stoppage continues for two months, but it's hopeful it will be resolved by the end of this week.

Additional reporting by Reuters