The transformation of South Africa’s mining industry is not very encouraging, says Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu.
Transformation remained a significant challenge to the advancement of the industry. The sector would be compelled to transform, she said at the Mining Indaba, in Cape Town.
Within the broad concept of transformation, Shabangu noted that the particular areas of concern for government were the way in which empowerment transactions were undertaken, invest-ment into black economic-empowered companies, and the involvement of empowered companies in the broader mining indus-try.
South African Minerals Development Association director Sipho Dube stated that mining companies should not take the issue of transformation lightly, given the history of the country and the continent.
He added that the empowerment of previously disadvantaged individuals to date was still a drop in the ocean.
It was noted that black individuals represented 83% of South Africa’s population, but 84% of mine management jobs were held by white individuals, predominantly white males.
The National Union of Mineworkers further noted that it believed that trans- formation was the most significant challenge facing the South African mining industry and that compromised transformation could not continue.