Writing is on the wall for NUM as Amcu eats rival’s lunch
Platinum belt union Amcu is in league with cold, hard reality in the numbers game against its arch rival, writes Xolisa Phillip
A plucky trade union in the dusty platinum belt has emerged as the unlikely force of labour stability in mining, and it was one of the mitigating factors against any action being taken on this country’s sovereign credit rating. The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) — often derided for its rabid, unyielding stance when it comes to wage negotiations and a lack of aversion to strikes — got a special mention in Moody’s Investors Service’s credit opinion on SA. Amcu concluded a three-year wage agreement with platinum producers without much fanfare, earning the union plaudits from Moody’s. This means that, for the next three years, platinum producers can go about their business without the threat of labour disruptions hanging over their heads. But what makes this development significant is that Amcu has entrenched its position as the dominant union in platinum, while also making inroads in the coal and gold sectors. This spells disaster for the National Union of Min...