Holding onto strengths
How current environment is affecting mining companies' strategy
SA’s mining executives are spending most of their time fighting fires rather than crafting long-term plans
On top of the almost daily political crises and rand volatility that have made decision making harder for SA businessmen over the past two years, mining company executives have also grappled with crises around their regulatory regime, safety incidents, wage negotiations and illegal mining. Speaking at last week’s Joburg Indaba, Lonmin CEO Ben Magara said he expected "chaos" to continue while Implats group executive Gerhard Potgieter said: "There’s a lot of red flags at the moment." The biggest talking point at the Joburg Indaba was the boycott of the opening dinner by the Chamber of Mines’ top executives to avoid sharing a platform with mineral resources minister Mosebenzi Zwane. The chamber said that if its executives had attended, it would not have brought about any constructive dialogue. The disagreement between the industry and the minister on the third version of the mining charter is now before the courts. Asked if he would invest in SA mining stocks, Jamie Horvat, London-base...