The South African mining sector said the strike by transport utility Transnet is costing the country, businesses, and the mining sector billions of rands, damaging an already fragile economy.

The South African mining sector said Thursday the strike by transport utility Transnet is costing the country, businesses, and the mining sector billions of rands, damaging an already fragile economy.

The Minerals Council South Africa said the mining sector accounts for over 80 percent of Transnet’s rail business and 50 percent of the group’s income. They said the continuation of the strike will further damage the fragile economy. The employees from South African state-owned company Transnet have been on strike for over a week affecting exports tremendously.

“The damage caused by the strike is not just the immediate impact but the longer-term consequences, which will have a ripple effect on business and broader society. The long-term reputational damage to South Africa as a reliable supplier to global markets must be considered by all parties,” said Minerals Council South Africa spokesperson Allan Seccombe.

He said on average, South Africa exports about 476,000 tonnes of bulk minerals a day worth 83 million U.S. dollars, however, it is estimated that just 120,000 tonnes of minerals worth 15 million U.S. dollars are being exported daily due to the strike. He said major mineral export harbors are operating at between 12 percent and 30 percent of their daily averages.

The steel makers, farmers, and freight industry have said the strike is affecting their business and will damage the economy which is recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Transnet is the largest and most crucial part of the freight logistics chain that delivers goods to each and every South African. As a state-owned company, Transnet is made up of operating divisions including freight rail, rail engineering, national ports, port terminals, pipelines, and property.

Source : Xinhua

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