News Column

SA Amplats Sues Striking Miners

February 17, 2014

IntelliNews - Weekly Reports

South African Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), the world's biggest platinum producer, is suing the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) that is currently on strike in the country's three top platinum producers, Bloomberg reported. Amplats is suing AMCU for property damages, increased security costs and production losses caused by non-striking employees being prevented from going to work with a total value of ZAR 591mn (EUR 39.7mn).

In January, workers who are members of AMCU went on strike, seeking an entry salary of ZAR 12,500, more than double the current level. The strike affected all three top platinum producers in the country - Amplats, Impala Platinum and Lonmin, according to which the pay hike request is unaffordable and unrealistic.

According to Bloomberg, the three companies have lost USD 315mn in revenue due to the strike, with workers giving up USD 140mn in lost wages.

In 2012 and 2013, platinum producers lost a combined 879,400 ounces of production due to strikes, which resulted in lost revenue of ZAR 12.54bn. According to the companies' estimations, the workers have also lost ZAR 1.18bn in wages.

A day after the strike has begun, AMCU started government-brokered talks with the three companies in order to reach an agreement. The talks are still underway.

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Original headline: SA Amplats sues AMCU for property damages during ongoing wage strike


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