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The Impact of the 2014 Platinum Mining Strike in South Africa: An Economy-Wide Analysis

12 November 2014
Publication Type: Working Paper
JEL Code: C68, J52

In this paper we measure the economy-wide impact of the 2014 labour strike in South Africa’s platinum industry. The strike lasted five months, ending in June 2014 when producers reached an agreement with the main labour unions. The immediate impacts on local mining towns were particularly severe, but our research shows that the strike could also have long lasting negative impacts on the South African economy as a whole. We find that it is not the higher nominal wages itself that caused the most damage, but the possible reaction by investors in the mining industry towards South Africa. Investor confidence is likely to be, at least, temporarily harmed, in which case it would take many years for the effects of the strike to disappear. We conduct our analysis using a dynamic CGE model of South Africa.

Series title: Working paper 478
1 November 2014
Journal: Economic Modelling
1 December 2015
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