Sibanye StillwaterBusinessLive reports that precious metals producer Sibanye-Stillwater has launched a formal process to restructure a number of its unprofitable gold mines, with the potential loss of up to 6,670 jobs.  

Sibanye has been hit by a three-month strike at its gold operations.  However, the restructuring of the shafts was not directly related to the strike called by the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) on 21 November to demand a wage increase of R1,000 a month, said company spokesperson James Wellsted.  “We’ve been talking to the unions at monthly ‘future forum’ meetings about this matter, so it’s not new and not directly as a result of the strike.  The strike has meant that we’ve not had the unions coming forward to suggest ways to resolve the problems the way they did at Beatrix a few years ago,” Wellsted indicated.  The affected shafts are Beatrix 1 in the Free State and numbers 2, 6, 7 and 8 at Driefontein.  There are 5,870 employees at the mines and a further 800 contractors.  Sibanye was talking to unions at those mines, Wellsted advised.  “Our best attempts to address the ongoing losses at these operations have … been unsuccessful and sustaining these losses may threaten the viability of our other operations,” said CEO Neal Froneman.  


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