Northam Platinum, which owns the Zondereinde and Booysendal mines, will create about 6,500 permanent and contractor jobs over the next four to five years as it invests in bringing production of platinum group metals (PGMs) up to a million ounces a year. Northam’s investment presents a stark contrast to the rest of the platinum industry, which has shed tens of thousands of jobs in the past eight years as the platinum price has remained weak and mines are getting older and more costly to operate. CEO Paul Dunne said on Friday the group, which spent R2.6bn on capital projects and acquisitions in the six months to December, will spend R3.8bn in total for the current financial year. In Northam’s 2019 financial year, capex would be about R1.9bn and it would fall to R1.5bn in 2020. In the past few months, Northam has completed the acquisitions of the Tumela block of ground from Anglo American Platinum, which increases Zondereinde’s resources. It bought Eland Platinum from Glencore and boug...

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