Friday, June 22, 2007

Gold employers to consult trade unions

By Odette Ismail
22 June 2007

Talks between employers and workers in the gold mining industry are to resume after the chief executive of the Chamber of Mines contacted trade uinons yesterday.

Dr Elize Strydom, the chief executive contacted trade unions with a request for talks on July. This is when the chamber will make a new offer to the trade unions.

Solidarity and the National Union of Mineworkers on Wednesday declared a dispute after employers did not budge on an offer to the unions.

Andre van der Merwe, Solidarity’s mining general secretary said this dispute which may lead to a strike has now been suspended until next month.

“Events on the first day of the negotiations proved that a tough negotiating season lies ahead for the gold mining industry. We have decided to hold off the dispute as a sign of our commitment to a negotiated settlement.” says van de Merwe.

Reports reveal that the rand gold price has gone up by 65% which means the demand for gold is higher therefore this has raised the expectations of employees.

“The combined pressure brought about by the expectations of the workers in view of the industry’s performance and inflationary pressure on workers creates a climate for tough negotiations.” says van de Merwe.

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