Posts tagged as: exxaro

South Africa: Mineworkers’ Union to Embark On a Strike At Exxaro Coal

press release

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has served Exxaro Coal, which comprises of Grootgeluk and Leeuwpan mines respectively, with a notice to embark on a protected strike at Lephalale in Limpopo and Delmas in Mpumalanga.

The NUM has submitted wage demands on Thursday, 13 April 2017 and engaged with the company ever since until on the 6th of September 2017 through the conciliation by CCMA whereby parties failed to resolve the wage dispute. The NUM then served Exxaro with a 48-hour strike notice that became active from the 12th September 2017. The strike will start tomorrow morning at 6 am.

“The union demands a wage increase of 10%, service increment of 0.5% that is given to other employees and denied to other employees, housing increase of 10% or R5000.00, standby allowance of 10%, family responsibility leave of 8 days, long service award of 15 years with one Kruger rand etc,” said William Mabapa, NUM Deputy General Secretary.

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South Africa: Exxaro’s Coal Fight With Eskom Heats Up

By Matthew Le Cordeur

A war of words erupted on Thursday between Exxaro Resources [JSE:EXX] and Eskom over the expired Arnot Coal Mine contract for Arnot power station.

Dissatisfied with the high prices of coal, the financially embattled Eskom ended its 40-year coal supply contract on December 31. Since then, Exxaro has shut down its operation at the mine, affecting 1 800 jobs.

While Eskom said an arbitration process continues with Exxaro, the mining company said the state-owned enterprise rejected its latest proposal.

“This week Eskom informed us that they were not at a confidence level at which they can commit to the proposed plan,” it said in a statement on Thursday.

Eskom hit back, saying “some issues raised by Exxaro are premature as they are subject to the current process”.

“It is regrettable that Exxaro, the owner of the mining rights, decided to close the mine without fully exploring economically viable options,” Eskom said in a statement.

DA shadow minister of Mineral Resources James Lorimer believes the contract was cut in favour of a new one with the Gupta-Zuma owned Optimum coal mine.

“Eskom ended the contract… in favour of coal to be trucked in from Optimum,” he said. “That looks like a duck.”

Eskom said it is disappointing that Exxaro has given an impression that it was Eskom’s decision to initiate closure of the mine, which it says is not true.

“Exxaro has the option to continue with the mine without an Eskom contract, which would save jobs,” said Matshela Koko, Eskom’s head of generation.

“Exxaro’s revised coal-supply agreement contract that was submitted to Eskom in February 2016 promises to halve the costs per tonne for Eskom, but lacks substance and commitment on their part,” said Koko.

Exxaro said if Eskom does not extend its contract, the power utility will be under obligation to pay the outstanding amounts to fulfil all its mine closure obligations as agreed in the coal supply agreement.

This includes topping up the environmental liability, assuming all costs arising from Section 189 retrenchments and assuming all costs due and payable as a result of the mine closure.

‘Eskom responsible for jobs lost’

The company believes job losses will be entirely Eskom’s fault.

“The closure of Arnot mine will result in the abandonment of about 70 million tonnes of mineable coal and impact negatively on more than 1 800 jobs,” it said. “Exxaro is committed to reaching a solution that could (if accepted by Eskom) preserve a large amount of the jobs at Arnot mine.

“However, we cannot absorb the Arnot labour force within the other Exxaro mines as we have filled all vacancies from our other mines which recently reached the end of life.”

Eskom said it remains committed to exploring economically viable solutions. “However, not at the expense of the South African consumer,” it said.

This comes as many sectors in society criticised energy regulator Nersa’s approval to increase the electricity tariff to 9.4% for 2016/17, following Eskom’s application to recover R22.7bn from consumers.

Eskom CEO Brian Molefe said the decision to approve an electricity price increase of only 9.4% does not help Eskom’s financial sustainability and “will have operational consequences”.

“We will do our best to minimise the risk of load shedding, striking a balance with Eskom’s already depleted balance sheet,” he said in a statement.

“We note with concern the decision on open cycle gas turbines, which will guide Eskom’s operations in the future in terms of balancing the energy supply and demand in a bid to avoid load shedding,” he said.

Source: Fin24

South Africa: Eskom to Award Coal Bid for Arnot Power Station by March 31

By Siseko Njobeni

Eskom said on Friday that it will announce the winning bid to supply coal to its Arnot power station before the end of this quarter, after raising concerns over Exxaro’s performance and rising cost of coal.

Exxaro’s Arnot Mine has been supplying coal to the power station as part of the long-term coal contracts that Eskom entered into with coal miners decades ago. Eskom has, however, recently expressed displeasure with the coal contracts, citing lack of performance and rising costs of the coal.

Exxaro’s contract with Eskom to supply coal to the Arnot power station in Mpumalanga expired on 31 December 2015.

“In anticipation of this contract coming to an end, Eskom then issued a Request For Proposals (RFPs) in August last year, inviting all interested bidders, including Exxaro, to put forward their proposals for the supply of coal to the Arnot power station,” said Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe.

The closing date for the RFPs was at the end of October. Eskom is currently evaluating the RFPs, “a process which is expected to be finalised soon”.

The winning bidder or bidders will be announced before the end of this quarter,” Phasiwe said.

He said the Arnot power station was currently operating as usual, despite the lapse of the coal contract. This was because the Arnot mine was not the biggest supplier of coal to the power station.

He said that for the past 10 years the power station has been receiving over 80% of its coal supplies from other suppliers. “We have been getting more coal from the other players,” Phasiwe said.

The Arnot mine needs approximately four million tonnes of coal a year. Phasiwe said it was too early to tell if Eskom would get the required coal from a single supplier or multiple suppliers. “We will get an indication from the RFP process,” he said.

Exxaro and Eskom have been in negotiations about the coal supply contract since 2013.

In a statement, dated 30 November 2015, Exxaro confirmed that Eskom had given it a notice to terminate the contract.

Exxaro further said it was a mining right holder “and Eskom owns the Arnot Mine movable and immovable assets and therefore Eskom will ultimately be liable to defray all costs related and incidental to the closure of the Arnot Mine”.

Source: Fin24

South Africa

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