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Anglo Platinum to sell SA mines
The world’s largest platinum producer, Anglo American Platinum, is considering selling several of its South African mines after prolonged a five-month strike in the sector caused headline earnings for the first half of the year to drop more than 80 percent compared to the same period in 2013.
Headline earning for the first six months of this year were down to just R157 million from R1.3 billion in 2013 as a result of the unprecedented, in South Africa at least, industrial action. The announcement has led to speculation that as many as 20 000 jobs could be lost, but first prize would be selling the mines to a local competitor to preserve as many jobs as possible.
According to the statement from Anglo American Platinum, “The intention to exit Union mine and concentrators has already been announced, and it has now been concluded that Rustenburg and our Pandora JV asset will be better placed in the hands of new owners who would be able to provide the focus and capital for the operations to have a successful future.
“The Company therefore plans to divest these assets in the most appropriate manner, and prioritise its capital spend and focus on Mogalakwena, Unki, Twickenham, Amandelbult, and the JV assets – Mototolo, Modikwa, Kroondal and BRPM. We are assessing our Bokoni JV asset and will make a further announcement on this in due course.”
Chris Griffith, CEO, added: “The delivery of our strategy will allow us to focus capital efficiently on the repositioned portfolio, achieving a more profitable, sustainable company for the future. We will continue to work closely with all key stakeholders to ensure optimal outcomes for the assets, employees, and the South African platinum industry as a whole.”