Fin24

Gold miners still negotiating

2011-07-11 09:53

Johannesburg - Mineworkers in the gold sector will continue wage talks with their employers on Wednesday, the National Union of Mineworkers (Num) said.

"If there is no resolution, we will inform them of our intention to strike," said spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka on Monday.

Members were already mobilising for possible strike action as they believed the Chamber of Mines was dragging its feet on salary negotiations.

The Num, the United Association of SA (Uasa) and Solidarity represented about 140 000 employees working for chamber-member companies such as AngloGold Ashanti [JSE:ANG], Harmony Gold Mining Company [JSE:HAR] and Goldfields.

Last week, chamber negotiator Elize Strydom said it had increased its wage offer to 5% for the lowest paid employees and 4.5% for the rest.

The Num and Uasa hoped to raise the chamber's offer to 14%.

Solidarity members wanted 12%. Solidarity submitted a lower figure in light of the production environment and 4.6% consumer price inflation.

It felt its figure, although still above inflation, would help retain skilled employees.

The chamber recently said production in the gold mining industry had consistently declined and it faced pressure from the high costs of electricity, water and fuel.