Peter Staude, Managing Director of Hulett Aluminium says, "The longer term
impact of what is happening at Hulett Aluminium could well be more serious than
the short term consequences. Hulett Aluminium has made one of the few major
investments in manufacturing in South Africa in recent times. The Company is
actively involved in attracting local and foreign investment in downstream
aluminium businesses, to be supplied from its R2.4 billion new facilities. A
strike such as ours, which is not based on a rejection of the wage offer is not
good news when one is busy encouraging future investment."
Peter Staude is a board member of the recently established Trade and Investment KwaZulu-Natal.
Annual wage negotiations have been concluded with both NETU (National Employee Trade Union) and SAEWA (South African Electrical Workers Association). Improvements were made to a number of conditions of service with wage increases ranging from 8.1% to 9%. Total cost to company amounts to approximately 9.5%.
Numsa (National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa) have rejected Hulett Aluminium's conditional offer, which has now been withdrawn. Numsa members, who make up approximately 28% of the total Company's employees, have been on strike since midday on Monday August 13, 2001. The impact on the Company has thus far been minimal.