Industryweek 7007 South Africa Metalworkers

South Africa Metalworkers to Take Latest Offer to Striking Members

July 8, 2014
South Africa's striking metalworkers union says it will take the latest offer from the main employers' group to its members, possibly ending a week-old stoppage that has hit car manufacturers.

JOHANNESBURG -- South Africa's striking national metalworkers union said on Tuesday it would take the latest offer from the main employers' group to its members on Wednesday, possibly ending a week-old stoppage that has hit car manufacturers.

A spokesman for the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa — NUMSA — did not elaborate on the offer. The labor ministry said the two sides were very close to securing a deal.

"The differences are in terms of fractions," ministry spokesman Mokgadi Pela said.

Pretoria has intervened to try to break a deadlock that is costing industry an estimated 300 million rand ($28 million) a day.

Africa's most advanced economy is struggling to recover from a series of work stoppages that have eroded business confidence.

Last month's wage settlement in the platinum belt ignited a separate wildcat strike by 2,000 NUM-affiliated workers at Impala Platinum's Marula mine on Friday.

But those miners are now back to work and negotiations have started on their demands that Implats match the deal obtained by AMCU in other platinum mines.

"They are all back to work," Implats spokeswoman Alice Lourens said. "We are now engaging with them about their concerns."

By Tiisetso Motsoeneng and David Dolan | Writing by Helen Nyambura-Mwaura and Zandi Shabalala | Editing by Andrew Roche

Copyright Reuters, 2014

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