SA's biggest gold union said to reject pay offer

Johannesburg - Members of the National Union of Mineworkers, the biggest labour union at South African gold companies, have been rejecting a final deal tabled in wage negotiations, according to a person familiar with the discussions.

Sibanye Gold [JSE:SGL] and AngloGold Ashanti [JSE:ANG], the world’s third-largest producer, proposed on July 30 to raise monthly pay for entry-level workers by R1 000 annually for the three years started July 1. Harmony Gold Mining [JSE:HAR] offered a R500 increase. Basic pay is currently about R5 800.

The Harmony offer has been rejected by members, said the person, who requested anonymity because the information is not public. At Sibanye and AngloGold, workers have indicated they are prepared to accept the R1 000 increases if they are considered salary rather than an allowance and benefits are raised as well, the person said.

The NUM, Solidarity and Uasa unions will respond to the wage proposal by August 7, Elize Strydom, the chief negotiator on behalf of the producers at the Chamber of Mines, told reporters on Friday.

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) formally rejected the offer on Tuesday, the Chamber of Mines said in a statement. The union said it wanted to continue negotiations, it said.

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