"The mining strike does not sit in the overwhelming category that other commentators in South Africa suggest, as more investors from across the world are seeing the importance of investing in [the country] as [it] remains the gateway for investing in the continent,” Rob Davies, South Africa’s minister of trade and industry told CNBC Africa.
(WATCH VIDEO: The effects of platinum mining strikes on S.Africa's economy)
“There is an issue with the mining industry and with the mining strike. As government, we have repeatedly stressed that we need parties to come together and find a solution as this has an impact on how we are perceived.”
The ruling party, the African National Congress, has been accused by industry experts of dragging its feet in mediating the endless conflicts between the dominant platinum union, Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) and mining companies.
Skills shortage has also been singled out as one of the challenges being faced in the economy.
“We do not have enough skills so the biggest challenge in the labour market is to ensure that we have skills development programs and adequate training,” Davies added.
“As we industrialise, the key challenge we need are more skilled and more capable labour force. We tell investors that they should get involved in training as it is the fundamental challenge we have.”
The platinum strikes are estimated to be costing South Africa about 400 million rand a day with projections suggesting that companies have lost over 10 billion rand in revenue over the past three months.
Certain media reports suggest that companies are moving towards mechanisation which will see retrenchments in the sector.
(READ MORE: No end to S.Africa's Platinum strikes as violence looms)
The workers’ union, Amcu, has been calling for a wage increment of up to 12,500 rand which employers are arguing that it’s beyond their reach.
BY TRUST MATSILELE