South Africa platinum miners' strike talks break down

Striking miners Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Unions are seeking a big increase in miners' salaries

Talks to end a strike by platinum miners in South Africa have been suspended indefinitely.

Unions and the world's top three platinum producers have not been able to reach an agreement in a pay dispute.

An apparent softening of the union position six weeks into the strike was not enough to keep negotiations open.

Platinum production at Anglo American Platinum, Lonmin, and Impala Platinum has been severely affected by the strike.

All parties will now consider the current offers, but one of the companies described the union position as "unaffordable".

Unions representing miners working for the companies want the basic salary increased to 12,500 rand ($1,168; £697) a month for the lowest paid workers over a period of four years.

Anglo American Platinum said this would represent an average annual increase of 29% that "remains unaffordable".

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