Reeling mining sector set for wage talks

WAGE negotiations for 2016 between the Chamber of Mines and the Associated Mine Workers Union of Zimbabwe (Amwuz) are set for later this month with both parties laying the groundwork for the talks, businessdigest has learnt.
The negotiations come at a time the industry is reeling from various challenges which include falling commodity prices and power shortages.

Kudzai Kuwaza

Informed sources said the chamber is preparing a position paper that notes the state of the industry and its ability to increase wages which will be discussed at its executive committee meeting next week.

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“We expect to start negotiations with the union mid-month,” an official said.

“The chamber has started to prepare a paper on where we are and what the situation is.

“The paper will be presented at the chamber’s executive committee meeting between November 12 and 14 for discussions among other issues.”

However, indications are that the chamber is reluctant to increase wages in 2016 because they feel a 3% increase effected this year was high in light of the fact that deflation is around -3%.

Amwuz president Tinago Ruzive told businessdigest that they are currently consulting members before coming up with their position in the wage talks.

“But as we go for the negotiations, we are cognisant that the industry is still struggling and is not yet out of the woods,” said Ruzive.

Meanwhile, the Employers’ Confederation of Zimbabwe (Emcoz) will hold its annual collective bargaining summit in Nyanga from November 20-27.

Emcoz executive director John Mufukare said the summit to be held under the theme “Austerity for Posterity”, will look at the painful measures needed by employers and workers to remain viable.

“We are going to look at the medicine that needs to be taken by the labour market to improve the economy,” Mufukare said.

“We are asking if we are ready to take the medicine needed to survive until the economy improves.”

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