Anglo Platinum Starts Talks Over 2,000 South African Job Cuts

Anglo American Platinum Ltd. started talks with unions over as many as 2,000 possible job cuts at two operations in South Africa after prices almost halved in five years.

Amplats, as the world’s largest platinum producer is known, is targeting the redundancies at its Twickenham growth project and the Union mine, which it is trying to sell, the Johannesburg-based company said in an e-mailed statement on Friday. The Twickenham project will be idled while Amplats aims to keep Union profitable, it said.

“This proposed restructuring of Union mine is necessary irrespective of whether or not a sale of the operation takes place,” the producer said.

Amplats is embarking on at least a third round of job cuts in as many years in an effort to weather a slump in prices that is weighing on producers’ margins. South African miners have informed the government of their intentions to cut as many as 32,000 jobs, Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane said last month. Amplats reduced its employee numbers to 43,349 at the end of last year from more than 56,000 in 2012.

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