Kumba reports no fatalities in half-year to June
‘Improvement in all key safety indicators’
KUMBA Iron Ore, Africa’s largest iron ore producer that supplies the global steel industry, said it had zero fatalities in the half-year to June after two employees died in two separate incidents last year.
Kumba chief executive Themba Mkhwanazi, said: “I am pleased to report that Kumba has delivered on our key objectives set for the first half. Kumba was fatality-free and improved significantly on all key safety indicators.”
The zero-fatality rate comes as Kumba’s total production improved 23 percent in the half-year to June following the implementation the revised mine plan at Sishen Mine in the Northern Cape.
Weak iron-ore prices last year resulted in Kumba implementing the plan and restructuring the operation.
Kumba increased its production guidance for this year to between 41 million and 43 million tons, with Sishen producing between 28 million and 29million tons of product and 155 million to 165 million tons of waste as a result of improvements since the restructuring at Sishen.
The Kolomela Mine, also in the Northern Cape, was expected to produce between 13 million and 14 million tons this year, aided by further improvements in plant efficiency and throughput rates, the company said.
It said that waste guidance at Kolomela remained at between 50million and 55million tons for the year.
Mkhwanazi said the successful execution of the restructuring and the new mine plan had increased the mine’s flexibility .
“The new mine plan, operating model and significant fleet productivity gains of 57 percent helped to drive Sishen’s improved performance,” he said.
Mkhwanazi said that Sishen had focused on increased operator training and equipment operating hours through higher attendance rates, different shift patterns and more accountability at the supervisory level.
“Through these measures and a committed workforce, the mine has been able to reduce its reliance on contractors,” he said.
Kumba has backed the Chamber of Mines’ urgent interdict to have the Mining Charter reviewed and set aside.
Mkhwanazi said: “Kumba is supportive of the legal course of action being followed by the Chamber of Mines, with the ultimate objective of arriving at a negotiated solution that is practical to implement, and that preserves and enhances investment in what is a critically important industry for South Africa.
“In the absence of new investment, South Africa will fail to deliver the economic growth required to create greater levels of employment and socio-economic upliftment for the benefit of all South Africans,” he added.
Mkhwanazi said Kumba was committed to meeting South Africa’s transformation objectives and had been a long-standing contributor to transformation.
He said the company had an effective 29 percent empowerment shareholding, and R57.4 billion of procurement had been with empowerment suppliers.
The Sishen mining right was granted by the Department of Mineral Resources this month, and the process to amend the right would now proceed, the company said.
Themba Mkhwanazi, the chief executive of Kumba Iron Ore, says the company supports the attempts by the Chamber of Mines to have the new Mining Charter reviewed.