Following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement of a nationwide lockdown from March 26 to slow the spread of Covid-19 in South Africa, JSE-listed gold and platinum group metals (PGMs) miner Sibanye-Stillwater is preparing its local mines to be wound down.
The lockdown will be in effect until April 16, and applies to any citizen or foreigner currently in South Africa, except for those deemed to provide an essential service, such as medical personnel.
Sibanye has begun implementing measures to place its South African gold and PGM operations under temporary care and maintenance. Once the lockdown has ended, the miner will proceed with the safe resumption of operations.
Sibanye notes that this suspension of operations will adversely impact on production at its local mines and, therefore, cautions its shareholders that production for 2020 may differ from previous guidance.
On March 23, the company also warned of lower activity at its Blitz PGM project, in the US, as a result of measures being taken by the company to protect employees.
The coronavirus, which causes Covid-19, has spread across the world and is impacting on mining operations in nearly all jurisdictions.