On Monday, Sibanye-Stillwater said it has decided to not close some of its mines in South Africa thanks to operations delivering solid results in the first half of 2017. The company previously indicated that approximately 200,000 ounces to 300,000 ounces of production per year were at risk because conventional shafts in the Rustenburg area remained unprofitable.
Sibanye-Stillwater said as a result of a successful integration of Rustenburg and Aquarius into the larger Sibanye-Stillwater group, the closure of these units has been averted.
The solid operational results from the South African operations have prompted an upward revision to the company’s 2017 production forecast and a downward revision to guided costs, it said.
The company has already seen a benefit of R550 million of the initially identified R800 million annual synergies, with forecast annualized benefits by the end of 2017 of approximately R1 billion. “This is significantly earlier than the three-year period we had initially guided to, to realize these benefits,” the statement said.
“I am very pleased with the outcome of the review, which has been driven by the results of the efforts of our colleagues in the Rustenburg region,” said Group CEO, Neal Froneman. “While we anticipate further opportunities to reduce costs and unlock operational synergies over time, the SA PGM operations are now well-positioned to benefit from firmer PGM prices.