Mining Weekly reports that a consultation process with stakeholders regarding the restructuring of Sibanye-Stillwater’s SA gold operations has resulted in expected job losses being nearly halved to 3 450.
When it embarked on the retrenchment process in February, the precious metals producer had expected 5 870 Sibanye employees and 800 contractors to lose their jobs. The process was in response to ongoing financial losses since 2017 at the Beatrix 1 shaft and Driefontein 2, 6, 7 and 8 shafts.
Sibanye on Wednesday said voluntary separation, early retirement and natural attrition accounted for the bulk of the 3 450 affected jobs, with forced retrenchments limited to about 800 employees and 550 contract workers.
Agreements were reached with stakeholders that Driefontein 8 shaft would remain in operation for as long as it made a profit, on average, over any continuous period of three months. No viable alternatives were, however, found for the Beatrix 1 shaft and Driefontein 2, 6 and 7 shafts, as well as for the Beatrix 2 plant. As such, Beatrix 1 and Driefontein 2 shafts will be placed on care and maintenance, while Driefontein 6 and 7 shafts and the Beatrix 2 plant will be closed.
Sibanye plans to achieve additional cost reductions through the rationalisation of single accommodation units, training facilities, occupational healthcare centres and primary healthcare facilities, among others.