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Johannesburg - Workers union in the gold mining sector on Wednesday rejected the latest and reviewed wage offer made by gold producers. 

This as gold wage negotiations between AngloGold Ashanti, Harmony, Sibanye-Stillwater and Village Main Reef, and representative unions, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU), the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), Solidarity and UASA, continued on Wednesday.

The gold industry said it made credible offers – which ranged from 5.5 percent to 6.5 percent for Category 4 underground employees, and three to 4.5 percent for miners and artisans, and officials – bearing in mind the current inflation rate of .6 percent and the state of the sector into consideration.

Workers are demanding a 15 percent across the board increase for officials, or salaries ranging from R9 500 for above the surface employees and between R10 500; and R12 500 for entry level underground staff over and above a housing allowance of R5 000, a transport allowance, and a meal allowance of R120 per day among others.

Chief negotiator on behalf of the gold producers, Motsamai Motlhamme, said the companies appreciated that union leaders representing employees at these negotiations have been mandated by their members to engage on their behalf, and that they bear the weight of enormous expectations on their shoulders.

"By definition, negotiation is a process of give and take – a two-way street. The companies urge the unions to narrow their demands, particularly non-wage demands, so that the companies in turn can focus on improving wages within the context of affordability," Motlhamme said.

"They ask the unions to consider the gold industry’s precarious position and economic realities. The ball is back in the unions’ court, and we hope that we will engage constructively when we meet again, so that we can move forward."

The parties will meet again on Wednesday next week.

African News Agency (ANA)