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Mantashe vows to confront Minerals Council over job losses

Minister Mantashe says mining companies should find ways they could optimise production and not run to cutting jobs.

Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe. Picture: @DMR_SA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has vowed to confront the Minerals Council of South Africa head-on in an effort to find lasting solutions to job losses in the mining sector.

This follows Gold Fields' announcement on Tuesday that it was considering letting go at least 1,500 workers.

Last week, Implats said it would be retrenching 13,000 workers and closing off its unprofitable mine.

Minister Mantashe says that mining companies should find ways they could optimise production and not run to cutting jobs.

Spokesperson Nathi Shabangu says: “The minister wants to create a conducive environment where the industry, the department and the unions can work together and engage continuously in order to find solutions.”

He says that by law, mines should discuss these options with the department before decisions are taken.

Mantashe has accused mining companies of merely ticking the box in engagements with the department and never really discussing matters meaningfully in the interest of sustaining the sector and the economy.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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