Platinum mines warn they can’t serve suppliers

Anglo American Platinum and Lonmin said on Wednesday they can no longer deliver to certain suppliers, and have sent out force majeure notices.

"I can confirm that we have sent force majeure notices to certain suppliers of goods and services," Anglo American Platinum spokesperson Mpumi Sithole said.

A force majeure notice is used to exempt parties from their contractual obligations, usually due to causes that could not be anticipated or were beyond their control.

Sithole said some of the company's suppliers were able to continue providing goods and services as normal. No force majeure notices had been issued to customers, she said.

SABC news reported on Wednesday afternoon that Lonmin had also issued force majeure notices to 13 of its suppliers.

"Most of the suppliers are really feeling the impact of the strike because they can't supply the mine with any commodities at this stage because we are not creating orders due to the fact we are not mining anything," Lonmin commodity manager Mpho Mochekela was quoted as saying.

"Also the suppliers that are rendering services to our premises, them as well, we can't really continue business as usual with them because of non-activity … within our operations."

Members of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) at Impala Platinum, Anglo American Platinum, and Lonmin downed tools on January 23 to push for a basic monthly salary of R12 500. They rejected a wage offer of up to 9%.

The companies, in turn, rejected Amcu's revised demand that the R12 500 could be achieved over four years, saying it was unaffordable. – Sapa

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