(Repeats with missing words in first paragraph)
By Ed Stoddard
JOHANNESBURG May 22 Impala Platinum,
the world's second-largest platinum producer, said it was losing
production of 3,000 ounces a day as most workers were not
reporting for duty at its Rustenburg mine on Tuesday because of
The mine, shut for six weeks earlier this year because of a
power struggle war between unions, has been hit again by fresh
clashes between the dominant National Union of Mineworkers (NUM)
and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union
"We have called on our employees to return to work and allow
the law to take its course and for the violence to cease.
Production will be impacted by 3,000 platinum ounces a day,"
Implats said in a statement.
Implats' Rustenburg operation accounts for about 15 percent
of global output and the spot platinum price was around 0.5
percent higher in early trade on Tuesday at around $1,468.00 an
Police spokeswoman Adele Myburgh said roads around an
informal settlement near the mine had been blocked by rocks, and
workers were being prevented from showing up for shifts. The
community has been the scene of violent clashes in the past.
She said the protests flared when police arrested two
suspects Monday afternoon for shooting and wounding another
miner last week in an NUM/AMCU scuffle.
"The suspects are allegedly part of AMCU and the worker shot
belongs to NUM. So the AMCU members have gone on strike
demanding the release of the two suspects," Myburgh said.
Implats said it had not received any demands from the
workers in relation to the work stoppage "which in our view is
as a result of continued union rivalry between the NUM and
The often violent 6-week stoppage earlier this year cost
Implats 120,000 ounces in lost output and pushed the spot price
of platinum higher.
South Africa accounts for most global production and supply
and the country's platinum sector has also been hit by a
government safety drive that has seen a surge in inspections and
operational stoppages for violations.
(Editing by Hans-Juergen Peters)