Minerals Council re-elects VPs, Mantashe chastises harsh critics of the State

The Minerals Council South Africa has re-elected Kumba Iron Ore CEO Themba Mkhwanazi, Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp and Northam Platinum CEO Paul Dunne to function VPs for one more 12 months.

The council hosted its 132nd annual common assembly (AGM) on May 25, reporting that mineral export gross sales totalled R841-billion in 2021.

The Minerals Council represents 90% of South Africa’s mineral manufacturing by worth and is the business’s main advocacy organisation.

The council studies that the mining business’s contribution to gross home product (GDP) in 2021 got here to R480-billion, or 8.7%, in contrast with a contribution to GDP of R353-billion, or 7.1%, in 2020.

Mining was one of few sectors to really create employment in 2021, with 8 000 jobs created throughout the 12 months.

As of December 31, 2021, 71% of the business’s 450 000 staff had been absolutely or partially vaccinated in opposition to Covid-19.

The Minerals Council mentioned that though manufacturing had recovered by 11.2% year-on-year, 2020 was certainly a low base 12 months and mining manufacturing had not managed to recuperate to the output peaks witnessed between 2000 and 2006.

This was, partly, owing to a scarcity of exploration and funding in the business. CEO Roger Baxter confirmed that the council continued to interact with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy on the draft Exploration Strategy agreed upon initially in January 2021.

Baxter mentioned the council awaited engagement from authorities on the “closing model” of the technique, as the newest model has not but been shared with the Minerals Council.

While the constructive impression of rising commodity costs benefitted the native mining business’s efficiency in 2021, bodily volumes of manufacturing and exports stay a priority. The council mentioned the longer-term development was unstable and struggling to interrupt out of its low trajectory.

Mining enter prices have additionally been rising at a mean charge of 10% and crept as much as practically 12% in direction of the finish of 2021.

The council pointed to move and logistics challenges at South Africa’s ports and railways as a dampener on export efficiency.

On one other notice, Baxter bemoaned that there had already been 20 fatalities up to now this 12 months, including to the 74 fatalities reported by the mining business in 2021, and the 60 reported in 2020.

He described 2021 as a 12 months of “regression” with regard to security, seeing that fatalities had reached a file low of 51 in 2019.

Meanwhile, commenting on Glencore South Africa’s continued membership of the council, given the mother or father group Glencore’s current admittance to paying bribes to governments in Brazil, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Venezuela, Baxter defined that it couldn’t apply the rules of its compact to non-member corporations, however mentioned it had been in constructive engagements with Glencore South Africa to make sure that its personal conduct was above board.

The Glencore group on May 25 introduced that it had reached a settlement with varied governments associated to the bribery allegations.

On energy-related issues, Dunne highlighted that there was a pipeline of 4.2 GW of vitality initiatives lined up in the mining business, of which many had been prepared for growth as soon as Eskom advances extra transmission initiatives, significantly in the Northern Cape.

Dunne famous that the State-owned energy utility would wish to steadiness out the decommissioning of coal-fired energy stations with the timeous tie-in of renewable vitality initiatives onto the grid.

It is the Minerals Council’s view that corporations are more and more evaluating the potential of renewable vitality initiatives, and that Eskom should quite concentrate on optimum administration for fewer energy stations, and expedite the course of to permit supplementary provide to come back on stream.


Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe used the council’s AGM as a possibility to handle South Africa’s rating for the first time amongst the world’s ten least-attractive mining locations globally, as per the Fraser Institute Annual Survey of Mining Companies 2021.

He mentioned the exterior components impacting adversely on the mining business, together with load-shedding, operational inefficiencies at ports and railway cable thefts, needed to be taken under consideration.

“We should reinforce the work carried out in areas the place we’re doing nicely, similar to coverage attractiveness and the availability of expertise and labour. We should be seen to be working and never merely responding to scores.

“The business should do an in depth evaluation of this report regardless of the flaws in the institute’s analysis methodology.”

Commenting on South Africa’s simply vitality transition, Mantashe emphasised that the debate ought to cowl the journey from high-carbon emissions to low-carbon emissions, and that it shouldn’t embody pitting one vitality supply or expertise in opposition to one other.

He mentioned the important concern ought to be securing dependable vitality provide, with a accountable strategy to phasing out coal, or investing in clear coal applied sciences.

The Minister urged the business, significantly the coal sector, to collaborate with the Council for Geoscience on its carbon seize and storage analysis challenge, in Mpumalanga.

Mantashe thought it prudent to debate the difficulty of mines and shafts which are put underneath care and upkeep to sterilise alternatives. “Our legislation permits us to use the ‘use it or lose it’ precept in response to operations that intentionally sterilise deposits. We firmly imagine the nation should discover, prospect and mine its mineral sources to the profit of South Africans.

“Therefore, operations underneath care and upkeep should be launched to the corporations which are on the lookout for alternatives and which are keen to mine.”

Touching on insults to the State, the Minister spoke out about his observance of a rising temptation on the half of mining executives to insult authorities.

“Such executives don’t have any regard for the business’s worldwide scores and its relations with authorities, which makes it troublesome to course of business points.

The business should additional talk about the function of enterprise associations who additionally discover it modern to insult authorities and the governing celebration, projecting them as talking for the sector.”

Mantashe concluded with an enchantment to the business to unfold constructive messages and state, with out exaggeration, the challenges the business faces and suggest cheap options on how these ought to be overcome.


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