NUM declares wage dispute at BHP mine
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said on Tuesday it had declared a wage dispute with BHP Billiton's Hotazel manganese mines and the issue had been referred to the government mediator to avert a strike.
NUM said the company was offering 5 percent while the union's demand was 13 percent, over double the inflation rate. Wage settlements in South Africa's mining sector generally exceed inflation.
In the year to end June 2012, BHP Billiton produced 7.9 million tonnes of manganese ore. Of that South African operations contributed 3.6 million tonnes.