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Mar 7, 2012

Woman miner’s murder adds fuel to South Africa safety drive

VENTERSDORP, South Africa (Reuters) – For David Msiza, South Africa’s chief mines inspector, the issue of safety underground has become personal; he believes many mining bosses just don’t care.

A surge in government-ordered safety stoppages has already hit output in the world’s largest platinum producer and the murder of a female miner underground last month means South Africa’s mines are going to come under even more scrutiny.

Mar 7, 2012

One-day strike hits S.Africa, mines grind to halt

JOHANNESBURG, March 7 (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of
South Africans joined a one-day national strike on Wednesday,
hitting mining production, as the biggest labour group in the
continent’s largest economy flexed its muscles to remind the
ruling ANC of its political clout.

Gold Fields, the world’s No. 4 producer, said its
operations had ground to a halt, with as many as 85 percent of
workers downing tools in response to the call for a strike by
the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU).

Mar 6, 2012

Miners lead South African stocks lower

JOHANNESBURG, March 6 (Reuters) – Miners such as
Lonmin were felled by a slide in metal prices and led
South African shares lower on Tuesday, with blue chips posting
their biggest one-day loss in over 3 months.

The benchmark blue-chip Top-40 index shed 2.07
percent to 29,612.31, its biggest fall since late November,
while the broader All-Share index gave up 1.89 percent
to 33,387.04.

Feb 28, 2012

Implats strike unearths big S.Africa labour rift

JOHANNESBURG/RUSTENBURG, South Africa, Feb 28 (Reuters) -
Behind a violent strike at the world’s largest platinum mine
a battle is taking shape: union ties forged in the fight against
apartheid are fraying, and a breed of labour leader is emerging
who could destabilise industrial relations across South Africa.

The new kid on the block at Impala Platinum’s (IMPJ.J: Quote, Profile, Research) giant
Rustenburg mine near Johannesburg is the little-known
Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).

Feb 24, 2012

Implats contract worker beaten to death-police

JOHANNESBURG, Feb 24 (Reuters) – A contract worker at
Impala Platinum’s troubled Rustenburg operation in
South Africa was beaten to death during an assault on Friday
when he tried to go to work, police said.

The assault, which left two other workers injured,
underscores how far the company is from resolving a violent and
illegal labour dispute that has already seen at least two other
people killed and cost the world’s second largest platinum
producer 80,000 ounces and counting in lost output.

Feb 16, 2012

South Africa police fire tear gas at rioting miners

RUSTENBURG, South Africa (Reuters) – South African riot police fired tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon on Thursday at hundreds of striking miners who went on the rampage at Impala Platinum’s Rustenburg plant, the world’s single biggest platinum mine.

At least 50 officers, backed by armored vehicles and two helicopters, moved into a shanty town near the mine after the miners torched homes in a dramatic escalation of a month-long strike that has hit the company and global platinum prices.

Feb 16, 2012

S.Africa miners turn violent in costly Implats strike

RUSTENBURG, SOUTH AFRICA, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Thousands
of protesting miners burnt tyres and torched a police office
near Impala Platinum’s Rustenburg mine in South Africa
on Thursday, as a month-long strike at the world’s
second-largest producer of the precious metal turned violent.

Police said a miner died of injuries after being beaten
during an overnight demonstration. Up to 5,000 miners blocked
the road leading to the mine and hurled stones at police,
provincial police spokeswoman Adele Myburg said.

Feb 13, 2012

Wildlife up close in a sea kayak off Cape Town

CAPETOWN (Reuters) – A pair of African penguins glide over the water while a pod of dolphins approach in the background.

Such an encounter might make the bucket list of many a wildlife enthusiast, but the experience takes on a whole new dimension from the vantage point of a sea kayak bobbing in the swells off Cape Town.

Feb 9, 2012

African miners face soaring costs

CAPE TOWN, Feb 9 (Reuters) – Labour demands in the
south, power problems in the east and new tax burdens in the
west: wherever you look in Africa, miners face a perfect storm
of soaring costs.

“There is no question that there are considerable cost
pressures on all of us in the industry, whether it is
electricity, labour, whether it is inflation, overall in every
single country where we operate,” said Cynthia Carroll, chief
executive of Anglo American.

Feb 9, 2012

South Africa unloved at its own mining party

CAPE TOWN, Feb 9 (Reuters) – The industry executives
who pile into Cape Town every year for the annual African mining
conference love the sun, wine and stunning mountain backdrop the
venue provides.

But South Africa’s once towering mining industry is no draw
and investors flocking to the “Indaba”, as it is called, have
their sights set on alluring prizes elsewhere on the continent.

    • About Ed

      "I cover commodities in southerrn Africa, a region that I have returned to after spending over four years covering religion, politics and the Great Recession in America. I am a Canadian citizen and grew up in Nova Scotia."
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