SMM5, March 25 / PRNewswire-FirstCall-Asianet /-it has been reported that Ashanti stopped production at the Mponeng mine west of Johannesburg after 164employees tested positive for the coronavirus. This is by far the largest COVID-19 outbreak in Africa and South Africa.
Earlier, Impala Platinum announced that 19 cases had been found a week ago at the Marula mine in Limpopo province, and 30 cases were reported at the Dwarsrivier chrome mine, owned by Assore Investments.
A spokesman for Assore said the shutdown of Assore's Dwarsrivier chrome mine, which produced 1.55 million tons of chromium ore in the last financial year, was a precautionary measure and that the mine would resume operations "after management successfully completed the audit.
South Africa's president, Cyril Ramafosa (Cyril Ramaphosa), announced a broad reduction in the country's COVID-19 locking rules from June 1, allowing underground mines to increase to 100 per cent of production in terms of level 3 locking, which is currently limited to 50 per cent of production capacity under level 4 locking rules.
AngloGold also commented on its decision to close the mine: "as a precaution, after discussions with regulators, operations at the Mponeng mine with a capacity of 50 per cent have been voluntarily suspended to complete contact tracking and re-deeply clean and disinfect workplaces and critical infrastructure".
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