JOHANNESBURG, January 10 – Gold producer Sibanye-Stillwater said on Thursday 2018 gold production at its South Africa operations was expected to be just marginally below guidance due in part to the successful implementation of measures to mitigate the impact of a strike.
Members of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) downed tools last November over wages and have clashed with colleagues from rival National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) which, alongside other unions, signed a deal with Sibanye and whose members are at work.
“Strike plans at the SA gold operations have been implemented in order to limit losses during the Amcu strike action,” Sibanye said on Thursday.
“This has been achieved by optimising production through the active deployment of employees reporting for work to specific production areas and minimising overhead costs by shutting down services (ventilation, refrigeration, etc.) to areas which are not operational.”
It said as a result gold production for 2018, excluding DRDGOLD output, was expected to be approximately 34,600kg, marginally below previous guidance of between 35,000kg and 36,000kg for the year.
The company said its South Africa platinum group metals (PGM) operations had benefited from higher rand PGM basket prices in the second half of 2018 with consistently good operational performance and 4E PGM production for 2018 of approximately 1.17 Moz, which was ahead of guidance.
“The strategic benefits of the group’s commodity and geographic diversification are clearly evident, with operational disruptions in the gold division offset by rising PGM prices and the solid operational performance of the PGM operations,” it said.
Sibanye-Stillwater is due to release operating and financial results for the six months and the year ended December 31 on February 21. (ANA)