South Africa‘s coal sector was the highest mining revenue earner in the country during 2011, generating more than R87.8 billionThe mining industry, particularly South Africa‘s, has been plagued with labour relations turmoil that have impacted significantly on the output of many mining companies, hurting the countrys economy and sending investors running. Mid-tier coal company Continental Coal‘s CEO Don Turvey says that the coal sector has been fortunate and not suffered the consequences of industrial action on as large a scale as other sectors such as gold and platinum. We settled our wages with the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union, which went well, and as a result we did not fall victim to industrial action-related stoppages. The situation requires constant engagement with all stakeholders. Such challenges are often the larger community, adds Turvey.
Meanwhile, the company revealed that it has been informed by its legal representatives that an amount of US$3 million (R27.13 million) has been received of the total US$10 million for the sale of its shareholding in the VanMag mine.The company also notes that its discussions and negotiations regarding a potential long-term off-take agreement, strategic partnership and stand-alone funding agreement for its De Wittekrans coal project which has advanced significantly over the past two months. In November last year, Continental Coal announced that an optimisation study on its De Wittekrans project had delivered positive results. As a result, discussions with parties that had previously submitted indicative funding and off-take proposals have intensified, particularly with India-based coal and power utility companies and major global commodity trading groups.