Mantashe urges Implats to reconsider restructuring plans

Impala Platinum announced its plans to will slash 13,000 jobs over the next two years as it grapples with rising costs and weak prices for the precious metal.

FILE: Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has urged Impala Platinum (Implats) to reconsider its restructuring plans in a bid to save jobs.

The South African platinum miner has announced that 13,000 jobs are now on the line.

Implats has announced restructuring plans off the back of rising costs and weak prices for its primary metal platinum.

The company says that in the absence of viable commercial options, some shafts will have to be closed in an attempt to restore profitability.

But Mantashe has described Implats’ actions as reckless, saying that the company is adding insult to injury.

The spokesperson in Mantashe’s office, Nathi Shabangu says: “Their actions are a display of arrogance. Sometimes they can go against the grain at a time when even when the president of the Republic, Cyril Ramaphosa, is calling on all of us to help in turning around the country’s economic misfortunes.”

The mining company says the industry, specifically in Rustenburg, has been under pressure for several years.

At the same time, Mantashe says that Impala Platinum’s decision to put 13,000 jobs on the line is a clear example of a careless company.

Mantashe says the firm has mindlessly committed to implementing its predetermined outcome no matter how unworkable the plan might be.

Shabangu says: “We’re about to start engaging with them with regards to this matter, and the team that will deal the mining company has yet to be announced.”

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)