De Beers, NUM talks fail

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Rough_diamonds_loupe-Diamonds mining giant De Beers Consolidated Mines and the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) have failed to reach a settlement at the Council for Conciliation‚ Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

A decision to meet with the CCMA followed a dispute declared early in the negotiations by the NUM on 12 June 2013.

However‚ the CCMA was unable to mediate the dispute and issued a certificate to this effect.

This means that the union is able to give the company 48 hours’ notice of its intention to embark on protected industrial action or the company may give the Union 48 hours’ notice to lock out union members.

Wayne Smerdon‚ De Beers lead negotiator‚ commented: “We had agreement in the CCMA on the broader issues in the wage negotiation. However several demands from the union‚ which all have high cost implications and which the union was not prepared to negotiate on‚ lead us to a point where we could not agree on a settlement.”

Smerdon added that the company had on the table “a competitive offer which was sustainable into the future”.

De Beers said it had made the necessary contingency plans in the event the NUM resolved to pursue with strike action. De Beers would continue to seek to find constructive means to resolve the dispute with the NUM.

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