KATSE DAM, Lesotho, March 20 (Reuters) – The idea of
Japanese consumers eating sushi exported from a tiny African
country with no coastline may sound improbable, but the kingdom
of Lesotho is pulling it off.
Hatched in the boardroom of South African bullion producer
Gold Fields, a project called Highlands Trout is now
exporting 2,000 tonnes of rainbow trout a year, mainly to
Japanese supermarket chain CGC.
RUSTENBURG, South Africa, March 20 (Reuters) – As South
Africa’s biggest post-apartheid mine strike marks its eighth
week on Thursday, it is already denting growth and export
earnings, and many of those affected are having to sell their
most prized possessions to make ends meet.
In an informal bar near the platinum belt city of
Rustenburg, striking miner Oupa Majodina holds up his cell phone
to show a photo of his pride and joy: his cattle.
JOHANNESBURG, March 17 (Reuters) – With no end in sight,
South Africa’s platinum strike is set to become the biggest
single stoppage to hit the country’s mining sector since the end
of apartheid in 1994, and now threatens the viability of an
industry already in deep trouble.
Revenue and production losses look sure to top those
experienced in 2012, when a wave of rolling, wildcat strikes
pushed Anglo American Platinum into the red and forced
Lonmin into a rights issue to shore up its finances.
JOHANNESBURG, March 13 (Reuters) – With a seven-week strike
all but crippling South Africa’s platinum sector, depressing
prices and pushing up costs, it may seem reckless to build a new
project to mine the metal.
But Wesizwe Platinum, backed by Chinese money, is
pressing on with its mine and on Thursday said it had moved its
target date for full production up by two years to 2020.
KATSE DAM, Lesotho, March 13 (Reuters) – The gorgeous
scenery is a welcome distraction from the aches in your legs as
you run along a dirt road twisting through African villages and
up hills so steep you can’t see the tops.
Welcome to the Highlands Trout Mountain Challenge in the
southern African kingdom of Lesotho. Sponsored by and taking its
name from a company that exports trout to Japan, it is one of
the newest entries in a small but growing global phenomenon of
unusual or extreme marathon events.
JOHANNESBURG, March 10 (Reuters) – South African
petrochemicals group Sasol Ltd is keen to invest in a
domestic shale industry once it gets off the ground, its chief
executive said, in a potential challenge to oil major Royal
South Africa’s cabinet proposed new regulations to govern
exploration for shale gas late last year after it lifted a 2012
moratorium on the activity in the central Karoo region.
JOHANNESBURG, March 10 (Reuters) – A public spat emerged on
Monday between South Africa’s labour mediator and the Chamber of
Mines over the former’s handling of talks to end an almost
seven-week strike in the platinum sector, further dashing hopes
of any breakthrough.
There are no scheduled talks between the two sides. The
squabbling between the group representing the producers and the
state mediator makes it doubtful that any government-brokered
negotiations will get off the ground again soon.
JOHANNESBURG, March 6 (Reuters) – The South African state
power utility Eskom imposed rolling blackouts for the
first time since 2008 on Thursday, forcing rail networks and
banks to switch to emergency generators after heavy rains soaked
power station coal supplies.
The blackouts, which Eskom said would last until 2000 GMT,
come at a bad time for President Jacob Zuma and the ruling
African National Congress (ANC), with general elections in two
JOHANNESBURG, March 5 (Reuters) – Wage talks between the
world’s top platinum producers and South Africa’s Association of
Mineworkers and Construction workers Union (AMCU) collapsed on
Wednesday, dashing hopes for an early end to a crippling
The stoppage – in a sector still raw from a series of
violent strikes in 2012 – has hit over 40 percent of global
production of the precious metal used for emissions-capping
catalytic converters in automobiles.
JOHANNESBURG, March 4 (Reuters) – South Africa’s Association
of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) said on Tuesday it
had revised its wage demands to the world’s top platinum
producers, in its first major concession as a sector-wide strike
rumbles into its sixth week.
The two sides remain far apart on the issue of wages,
however, and AMCU plans a march in Pretoria on Thursday to
protest what it says is government bias in favour of the mining
companies, suggesting its members still plan to be off work