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Production still lost: Amplats

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By SAPA

Rustenburg - Production at Anglo American Platinum's Rustenburg, Union and Amandelbult mines have not yet reached pre-strike levels, the mining company said on Friday.

“Due to the planned ramp-up process the operations have not yet reached the pre-strike production levels and the company continues to lose production,” spokeswoman Mpumi Sithole said in a statement.

“Production is now above 80 percent of steady state level.”

About 21 000 mine workers, out of a workforce of 58 000 at Amplats operations in Rustenburg, went on a wildcat strike in mid-September, demanding a monthly salary of R16 000 before deductions.

Striking miners accepted an offer by Amplats on November 15.

Workers agreed to a R4500 once-off payment and a pre-tax, stand-alone allowance of R600 a month, the National Union of Mineworkers said at the time.

Since workers accepted Amplat's offer and returned to work, the company had lost a further 40,000 ounces of platinum production from its own mines, said Sithole.

Total losses from the strike and the on-going ramp up period was 235,000 ounces of platinum production, with 195,000 ounces lost as a result of the illegal strike.

“We are pleased that our employees are back at work and that the safe start-up programme was conducted successfully and ramp-up is progressing according to plan,” said Amplats CEO Chris Griffith. - Sapa

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