Sibanye-Stillwater signs new, three-year wage deal for Kroondal with AMCU, NUM

SIBANYE-Stillwater said it had signed a three-year wage deal agreement with unions for its Kroondal platinum mine covering the period July to end-June 2023.

The agreement is for a basic wage increase for category 4 to 9 surface and underground employees of some for the first year is 5% or R1,000 per month, whichever is the higher, for each of the three years.

In terms of the agreement, miners and artisans and officials will receive a 5% or R1,000 per month (whichever is the highest) annual increase over the three-year period.

The wage pact was signed with the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).

Neal Froneman, CEO of Sibanye-Stillwater, has had a combative relationship with unions, especially AMCU, over the years, but he said the Kroondal agreement was “encouraging” as the style of the negotiations had been “constructive … without any disruption”.

Last year, Sibanye-Stillwater brought AMCU’s five-month strike at its gold operations to an end after declining to meet its demands that had previously been agreed with other unions including the NUM. Froneman said at the time that the strike was part of a strategy to weaken the company ahead of its takeover of Lonmin which is an AMCU stronghold.

Sibanye-Stillwater currently employs more than 5,495 employees, excluding contractors, at its Kroondal operation, while the total South African platinum group metal operations have a workforce of 47,599 consisting of 36,120 employees and 11,479 contractors. Sibanye-Stillwater is the largest single employer in South Africa outside of its government.