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Finally the mining pact is signed, but AMCU abstained

by , 04 July 2013

The much anticipated pact, which seeks to bring stability to South Africa's troubled mining sector, was finally signed yesterday. But, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) has yet to sign on the dotted line. Already there are questions about whether the pact will do anything to improve the current issues afflicting the mining sector. Let's have a look at what's been going on…

Yesterday, key players, including “labour organisations, mining companies and government departments” got together to sign the mining peace pact, reports IOL.

But the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) refrained “from signing” reports Fin24.

The framework agreement “aims to bring stability to South Africa’s mines and restore investor confidence” in this troubled sector, says BDLive.

Deputy President, Kgalema Motlanthe was tasked with trying to resolve the many issues in SA’s mining sector through brokering a deal with the industry’s key constituents.

There’s still hope the AMCU will sign the mining pact

After the meeting in Pretoria yesterday, Motlanthe addressed reporters. He said “he hoped AMCU would sign soon,” adds Fin24.

The AMCU have asked “for time to seek a mandate from its constituencies,” reports MoneyWeb.

But is the mining pact worth the paper it’s written on?

Analysts are sceptical that the agreement will change any of the problems facing the sector.

As Mark Rosenberg, Eurasia Group’s senior African analyst remarked, “even if AMCU signs on later, the pact does little to resolve the turf war between rival unions or moderate wage demands, and labour unrest remains likely during upcoming negotiations over recognition and wages,” notes IOL.

Last year, platinum and gold miners “were hardest hit by wildcat strikes” reports BDLive. The strife saw violence which resulted in the deaths of over 50 people, during “the industrial unrest”. Investor confidence plummeted and “companies lost billions of rand in revenue”.

Let’s hope the agreement sees some sort of stability return to South Africa’s mines. Without stability, the future for miners in the country looks rocky. Our economy depends on a resolution.




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