SA Northam Platinum says operations resume at Zondereinde mine

By bne IntelliNews April 24, 2013

South African mid-tier platinum group metal (PGM) producer Northam Platinum said that drilling operations at its Zondereinde mine resumed Tuesday morning (April 23) following an agreement between the company management and the striking National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). The Zondereinde mine was hit by an unlawful work stoppage, which started on April 2. Under the deal, workers will receive a one-off payment equal to 50% of their basic salary for the duration of the strike and an additional payment of ZAR 2,000.

Northam said it lost output of 16,000 ounces of metal in concentrate (3PGM+Au) valued at about ZAR 192mn (EUR 16mn) due to the strike.

On its half-year report in February, Northam said that its Zondereinde mine had experienced a sustained operational recovery during the six months to end-December 2012, as it was not affected by the widespread illegal strikes, which plagued the industry last year.

Northam wholly owns and operates the Zondereinde platinum mine and metallurgical complex on the upper end of the western limb of the South African Bushveld Complex, which produces some 300,000 ounces annually. Its second mine Booysendal, is at an advanced stage of development and construction, and is scheduled to be commissioned by mid-2013. It is expected to produce approximately 160,000 ounces annually.

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