Department of Mineral Resources
The mineral resources department will continue to engage with mining companies in 2019 and beyond to discuss strategies to prevent fatalities, injuries and disease in the local mining industry.
The Chief Inspector of Mines, David Msiza, revealed this on the release of the 2018 Mine Health and Safety Statistics.
He added that “workshops with the Health and Safety Representatives to train and coach them in exercising their rights and powers as stipulated in the Mine Health and Safety Act will continue”.
The Chief Inspector also confirmed that the department will continue to collaborate with the social partners through the Mine Health and Safety Council and Regional Tripartite Forums.
“As part of the initiatives to combat seismic and gravity-induced fall-of-ground accidents, the Department has – through the Mine Health and Safety Council – established a task team comprising of the Department, the Council, the Council for Geoscience, Minerals Council South Africa, National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU), Solidarity, UASA and the South African Institute of Rock Engineers.”
The department will also monitor and enforce compliance via inspections and audits to ensure the implementation of two recent directives to the mining industry, namely, a directive to eliminate fire, heat and oxygen deficiency-related accidents and a second to eliminate rock-burst and rock-fall related accidents.
TB, HIV and AIDS programmes will also come under the monitoring spotlight based on Mining Charter commitments.
Meanwhile, the mineral resources minister, Gwede Mantashe, has welcomed the release of the Fraser Institute’s annual global survey of mining jurisdictions that recognizes improvements made by South Africa in investment and mining policy attractiveness.
“In the latest rankings, in terms of the attractiveness of its mining policies, South Africa ranks 56 out of 83 countries surveyed. It improves by 25 spots, compared to being 81 out of 91 in 2017. In terms of investment attractiveness, it bettered its place moving 5 spots from the previous year
when it was ranked 48 out of 91 countries; to – now – being 43 out of 83.”
The minister declared that the “ratings recognise the work done by government in providing stability and certainty on policy and regulation of the mining industry, over the last twelve months”.