HONG KONG Nov 12 Impala Platinum Holdings Limited, the world's No.2 platinum producer, expects the market for the precious metal with industrial uses to be in deficit for 2012 and the next few years, a company official said on Monday.
Speaking at a conference in Hong Kong, Derek Engelbrecht, Impala group executive for marketing, also said he expected lower output and job cuts as a result of rising costs and a drop in platinum productivity.
The South African government was unlikely to take any measures to ease months-long labour tension before a key conference of the African National Congress set to take place next month, he added.
Labour strife in South Africa's mining sector has supported platinum prices, at a time when uncertainty in the outlook for the global economy is weighing on demand for the metal mainly used in jewellery and autocatalyst production. (Reporting by Rujun shen; Writing by Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)