Today's Labour News

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MantasheBloomberg reports that the Chamber of Mines (COM) has been notified that Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe and the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) has sought leave to appeal a court judgment earlier this month over a crucial black-ownership principle in the Mining Charter.  

The High Court in Pretoria ruled that the first two versions of the charter did not require producers to top up black-shareholding levels in perpetuity if they previously met the minimum 26% requirement.  “The chamber is currently reviewing the specified grounds of appeal, although the DMR’s appeal appears to center on the majority judges obiter dictum comments about the legality of the 2010 charter and the enforceability of the charters,” the COM said.  The development is another volley in a longstanding legal battle to clarify the charter rules.  Last year the COM sought a declaratory order on the so-called “once empowered, always empowered” principle, successfully arguing that companies could reach the black-ownership requirements by counting previous sales to black investors, even if those investors later sold their shares to whites or foreigners.  Mantashe is holding talks with the industry, unions and mining communities on a new charter, which he believes will be concluded in May.

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