A worker attends to machinery at a smelter plant at Anglo American Platinum's Unki mine in Shurugwi
A worker attends to machinery at a smelter plant at Anglo American Platinum's Unki mine in Shurugwi

Two board members at Anglo AGM

By Dineo Faku Time of article published Apr 8, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - Diversified mining giant Anglo American plc said yesterday that only two board members would be allowed to attend the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) next month amid lockdown restrictions in the UK due to the coronavirus. The company said that the lockdown restricted public gatherings to no more than two people, thereby limiting the ability of shareholders to attend the AGM.

“In order to comply with relevant legal requirements, this year's AGM will be convened with the minimum necessary quorum of two shareholders,” the group said. “This will be facilitated by the company.”

Anglo American said that the board recognised that the AGM was a valuable forum that provides shareholders with an opportunity to raise questions and comments.

“However, the health and safety of the company's employees, shareholders and wider stakeholders are of paramount importance and the board fully supports the measures being taken by the government. On this basis, and assuming the continuation of containment and distancing measures, shareholders will not be able to attend the company's 2020 AGM in person,” said the company.

Britain has been severely hit by the spread of the coronavirus, which has claimed more than 5000 lives with more than 51000 people testing positive, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is in intensive care.

The virus prompted the JSE to introduce South Africa’s first virtual service AGMs late last month to allow companies to engage with its shareholders during the country’s 21-day lockdown scheduled to end next Thursday.

Alexander Forbes was the first company to host the virtual AGM.

Anglo American group chief executive Mark Cutifani on Monday said that the company had spent $125 million (R2.36billion) a week on suppliers and wages in South Africa despite the lockdown. He said the group had a duty to help keep South Africa’s economic wheels turning and that people get paid, so that essential services could continue, and that the government earned taxes.

“Despite operating at reduced levels in South Africa, we are still spending approximately $125m per week on procurement of goods and services from our suppliers and on wages, while also generating vital export earnings for the country,” he said.

The group said it would continue to provide essential services, including water tanks to host communities and provided support to 70 clinics. Last month the company announced that Kumba Iron Ore’s Sishen and Kolomela mines in the Northern Cape would operate with 50percent of the workforce. It also said at Anglo American Platinum, the Mogalakwena mine and the mechanised Mototolo mine would continue to operate with a reduced workforce and production.

Anglo American shares rose 6.36percent on the JSE yesterday to close at R318.01.

BUSINESS REPORT 

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