Economic impact of South Africa platinum mine strike
23 January 2014 Last updated at 10:05 GMT
The largest union in South Africa's platinum sector has called a strike over pay, the biggest since the 2012 Marikana massacre in which 34 workers were shot dead by police.
The AMCU trade union says 70,000 of its members at the three top platinum producers are walking out indefinitely in the row over pay.
South Africa holds about 80% of the world's known platinum reserves - and the dispute is expected to cripple the global industry.
Lerato Mbele reports from Johannesburg.