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Issue 28 of 38 Next Issue | Previous Issue | 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38
October 2007
Anglo Platinum in Three Empowerment Deals and 10 Years of Women in Mining - what have been the difficulties and what has been accomplished
 

ANGLO PLATINUM EMPOWERMENT DEALS PLACE R35-BILLION UNDER HDSA CONTROL

Anglo platinum has announced the creation of three empowerment deals that will place R35-billion of company assets under the control of historically disadvantaged South Africans (HDSA)

Two of the deals relate to Anglo Platinum’s September agreement with Anooraq Resources and Mvelaphanda Resources.

Anooraq Resources Corporation – the first black economic empowerment (BEE) mining house with a primary listing in North America to come into existence in South Africa – has been actively engaged in the exploration and development of platinum group metal properties in the Bushveild Complex in South Africa since 2000.

Mvela Resources is 51% controlled by Tokyo Sexwale’s Mvelaphanda Holding and former Anglo American SA chief executive Lazarus Zim’s Afripalm Resources. In terms of the transactions, Anglo Platinum will sell and effective 51% of Lebowa Platinum and 1% of the Ga-Phasha Project for a total consideration of R3.6-billion to Anooraq.

Following this transaction Anooraq, the current owner of 50% of Ga-Phasha, will own an effective 51% of Lebowa and Ga-Phasha through a newly created vehicle, Lebowa Holdco, Mvela Resources will purchase Anglo Platinum’s 50% interest in the Booysendal Project and 22.4% direct interest in Northam for R4-billion. Anglo Platinum and Anooraq have also agreed in principle to transfer their 50% interest in the Boikgantsho and Kwanda JV Projects into Lebowa Holdco so that Lebowa Holdco will own 100% of these assets.

Anooraq, listed in Canada and South Africa, will now become a platinum group metals producer.

As a result of these transactions Anooraq and Mvela Resources will respectively control the third and fifth largest platinum group metals resources bases in South Africa, representing a fundamental and sustainable transformation of the country’s platinum industry.

Commenting on these deals, Anglo American Chief executive officer, Cynthia Carroll, said: “This is a truly historic BEE transaction that will fundamentally transform the South African platinum mining industry through the creation of two major independent HDSA managed and controlled producers. The sale by Anglo Platinum of mining assets will achieve meaningful, sustainable and broad-based empowerment through the participation of communities, employees and women. Anglo American is strongly committed to the equitable and sustainable development of the countries and communities in which we operate and I believe this transaction represents another significant step forward in the empowerment of our South African operations.”

 

ESOP

Anglo Platinum’s third empowerment deal is an employee share ownership plan (ESOP) that will benefit more than 43 000 employees.

The new scheme covers all employees who do not participate in any Anglo Platinum share scheme and will comprise up to 1.5% of Anglo Platinum’s issued share capital (current market value of approximately R3.3-billion).

CONDITIONS

The implementation of these transactions is subject to a number of conditions, including completion of confirmatory due diligence, raising of relevant financing, conclusion of the requisite agreements, approval by the regulatory authorities and other third parties and approval by shareholders, where required, in general meeting.


10 YEARS OF WOMEN IN MINING CELEBRATED

This year is the tenth anniversary of women in mining.

In 1999 the South African Women in Mining Association (SAWIMA) was launched. This followed a number of events starting with recognition, by the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and the Southern Africa Regional Office (SARO), in 1993 that despite women participating in mining – undertaking small-scale mining activities such as gold panning, dealing in gemstones, mining and selling industrial minerals such as limestone, dolomite, clay and many others – women still remained insignificant in main stream mining.

It was recognized that women faced a number of barriers in the industry. Studies were then carried out by the UNIFEM SADC Gender Programme in Zambia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. They found that a general lack of know-how and technical skills, working in a haphazard manner in dangerous conditions, a lack of mineral beneficiation knowledge, and most important, a lack of financial resources to invest in mining operations, were the main barriers to women entering the industry.

This led to the formation of the SADC Women in Mining Regional Trust, which is based in Lusaka, Zambia. National associations were formed in Tanzania, Mozambique, Zambia Zimbabwe, Malawi and South Africa.

In June 1999, the SADC Women in mining Trust convened with the SADC Mining Ministers Committee. The result: the ministers directed all governments and institutions to mainstream gender in all programmes, projects and policies. The directive is in line with SADC Gender Development Declaration signed by heads of states at their summit in Malawi in 1997.

In South Africa, the SADC Women in Mining Trust approached the Department of Minerals and Energy to form a women in mining branch. Women from all the nine provinces in South Africa were mobilized and SAWIMA was launched in December 1999.

Simangele Mngomezulu started as an assistant information retrieval officer at Anglo American, and then moved on to fund raising, and assisted in raising money supplementary education programmes. After a brief a spell in a joint venture cleaning and security company, she established her own business, Thandekile Industrial Cleaning Services, operating in the mining sector. Today she is the managing director of NESA Mining and the national general secretary of SAWINA.

“It is impossible for most women to raise the capital to bur 26% of a company.” She uses herself as an example, “Since the beginning of 2007 I have been negotiating with a company, but because I cannot raise the capital the transaction is still not complete”.

She also says that financial institutions are not willing to help. Add to this traditionally male dominated environment and progress is slow.

“The battle is on all sides – financial institutions, the old order. Often this is a recipe for disaster, and many women give up.”

SAWINA recognizes this and is trying to assist women who want to enter the industry.

“We do not just offer training courses; we try to teach women language of mining. For example we run procurement workshops with the mining houses so that women can understand exactly what the mining house requires.”

She does say that procurement is the one area where-women have been quite successful.

“Procurement is an area where women have made great strides. And we are slowly chipping away. For example, a number of women have received mining licenses to mine in the Limpopo Province. This is progress. I just wish we could have more progress sooner than later.”

WOMEN UNDERGROUND: MANAGING DIFFERENCES  

The first woman to qualify as a miner was Abrie de Villiers who obtained her blasting certificate at the East Rand Property Mines in 1999.

Despite a scattering of women fighting their way into the mining industry over the years since then, the number of women working in non-clerical or non-support services in the industry has been slow. The number of women working as apprentices and section 18(1) learners is 11%, while plant, and machine operators and assemblers is 1%. The percentage of women working underground is only 2 % (98% men).

However, these figures cannot just be attributed to the fact that the industry is traditionally male dominated.

While the underground environment is a very macho social environment that can be hostile to women who often fear and also experience sexual harassment or intimidation or even assault, it is also a harsh physical working environment. This harsh environment emphasizes the physiological differences between men and women.

There are four categories of physical constraints. These are aerobic capacity, heat tolerance, functional strength and body dimensions. Aerobic capacity is the ability to perform work in which the body uses oxygen; and a woman’s maximum aerobic capacity is 15% to 30% less than man’s. Women are also less tolerant of heat than men and have less functional body strength than men. Equipment in the industry is also designed for the body dimensions of men, who are often taller than women.

However, this does not mean women should not work underground. It also does not mean that because women are physically different, they cannot wok underground.

These issues can all be addressed by management and technology. Impala Platinum has proved this. Since 2004, when its female workforce was 2.6%, it has increased the female contingents of its workforce to 5.6%. One of the initiatives that have assisted in this is the mining company’s pre-employment induction programme that takes the women through medical tests for fitness, heat tolerance screening and underground visits. In this way women have an idea of what is in store for them if they sign up.

Women can work underground if the circumstances are right. As Schu Schutte, principal researcher of the CSIR Competency Occupational Health and Safety and Ergonomics Researcher Group, stated recently in a popular mining publication, “Specifically for mining, the differences in physiological make-up must be accommodated- these are not insurmountable, but they must be managed.”

 

CHAMPION OF THE JUNIOR MINING UNDERDOG

Today there are a number of women in influential positions in the mining industry.

In government Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, previous minister of minerals and energy, now deputy president of this country springs to mind.

In the private sector a number of names also crop up: Cynthia Carroll and Dr Mamphela Ramphele (Anglo American), Prof. Gill Marcus (Western Areas), Fikile de Buck and Nomfundo Qangule (Harmony Gold) Nono Mohutsioa-Mathabathe (Dyondisani Mining Investment), Khnayi Ntsaluba (Mvelaphanda Resources) and Elize Strydom (Chamber of Mines).

There are more, but probably one of the best known women in the industry is Bridgette Radebe, head of Mmakau Mining.

Radebe started Mmakau Mining in the 1980s as a contract mining operation. Today it has partnerships with Total SA and Impala Platinum.

Sister of Patrice Motsepe, Radebe’s roots are in mining. Her company is named after the village in the North West Province where she grew up and, in fact, it was the exploitation of her tribe’s mineral rights and non-payment of royalties that led her to mining. Her first ambition was to be a lawyer to fight for the rights of tribes. However, despite being accepted as a student in mining law at Wits University, her racial categorization prohibited her from studying there.

Despite this setback she moved on and today many see her as not only a mining entrepreneur, but a champion of the junior mining underdog. Her company’s prime focus is on investment in sustainable mining ventures; “through community-driven involvement, with a view to providing wealth creation through empowerment procurement practices, managed empowerment partnering and entrepreneur development”. Radebe was also instrumental in ensuring that apart from the empowerment quotas in the mining charter, gender empowerment was included in the charter scorecard with a target of 10% participation by women in the industry set for the next five years and promoting women in mining is a cause she champions regularly.

 

 

 

 

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