Mining companies aren’t buying what the SA govt is selling — yet (MG)
This year’s Mining Indaba took place after another red-hot year for commodities, which ought to have inspired South African mining companies to put some of their extra cash into expanding local operations. But continued global uncertainty and the country’s deteriorating energy and logistical infrastructure have seemingly poisoned the chalice, leaving miners more risk averse than ever. As expected, the standout theme of this year’s conference was the country’s Eskom and Transnet-related deterioration, which has dented investor confidence. Although mining companies have enjoyed the bounty of the 2020s commodity boom, they have not been immune to the impact of the public sector’s failures. Their exposure to Transnet’s breakdowns especially has cost mining companies dearly, as they have failed to take full advantage of higher commodity prices. Data released by the Minerals Council South Africa this week lays bare the problem. Mining production fell by an estimated 6% last year, compared to the previous year, putting the average volume of mining sector production below pre-pandemic levels. Export values grew to R878 billion last year, from R856 billion the year before but, according to the council, this was purely because of an improvement in commodity prices. Export volumes were stagnant. Click here to read full article
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