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RESOURCES: Platinum Workers in for Decent Raise

 





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Wage negotiations at the world’s third largest platinum company, Lonmin, kick off officially this week. The trade union Solidarity has already presented management with its demand for a wage increase of 10% for mineworkers, artisans and officials as well as a market-related increase in the housing allowance of these employees.

The first official round of negotiations will be held today (Wednesday 20th October) and tomorrow. According to Solidarity spokesperson Jaco Kleynhans, the demands are in line with increases that were already reached elsewhere in the mining industry this year. “Solidarity has already reached agreements in the Chamber of Mines’ coal and gold sectors for increases of between 9% and 11%, and in the platinum sector an increase of 9% was reached at Northam Platinum. From this it is clear that the mining industry, and platinum mines in particular, can in fact afford good increases this year.”

Solidarity maintains that Lonmin is in a position to comply with the trade union’s demand. Lonmin’s production report for the third quarter of 2009 and the interim management report for the period until 30 June this year indicate that Lonmin’s underground production for the first nine months of the 2009 financial year exceeded that of 2008, while operational costs were more positive. In addition, the company’s platinum sales for the first nine months of the 2009 financial year rose to 490 347 ounces – 4% higher than sales in the corresponding period in 2008.


 
 
 
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