Johannesburg - Defence manufacturer Denel is seeking to defuse a strike by members of the National Union of Metalworkers of SA, the company said on Friday.
"Denel has made a revised offer to the union representatives, significantly reducing the gap to lower than benchmark," spokesperson Pam Malinda said.
"Any residual gap would be in respect of experience, qualification, etc. Numsa has put a counter proposal and we are in constant communication."
The company confirmed that about 600 unionised employees at ammunition manufacturer Denel PMP in Tshwane went on a strike, which it considered unprotected.
Numsa said on January 25 it was on a protected strike there.
Denel said because not all employees belonged to Numsa production had continued. It said the dispute dated back to 2006 when Numsa alleged there was too wide a gap between the highest paid and lowest paid employees in a grade, which it considered discriminatory.
Members at PMP were victims of salary disparities, Numsa said.
A remuneration and compensation expert was commissioned to look into the matter and the result of the survey was that the gap between the lowest paid employee and the average of the grade was reduced.
Denel said it considered the industrial action as "unprotected and regrettable", saying this contradicted a conciliatory process that gave rise to a ruling by the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration in November 2012 to resolve the issue amicably.
The company said its doors remained open for discussions.