State power utility, Eskom, says it expects to resume wage increase negotiations with trade unions in June.

This after the power utility and unions, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) and Solidarity, concluded three rounds of negotiations without reaching agreement.

“As a custom, the negotiations take place over three sessions of three days each. However, this year, all parties agreed to hold a fourth round of negotiations on 13 and 14 June 2023, with the view that there are prospects of reaching a settlement at the Central Bargaining Forum (CBF).

“Eskom is hopeful that it and the labour unions will find each other for the benefit of the company and in the best interest of the country,” Eskom said.

The power utility said negotiations have “progressed relatively well, with some significant movements made” since the beginning of talks in April.

“NUM and NUMSA opened the negotiations with a request for a 15% salary increment, while Solidarity requested 10.1%. Eskom responded with a 3.75% offer, which was later increased to 4.5%. The first and second rounds took place on 19 to 21 April and on 8 to 10 May 2023.

“During this round of negotiations, which began on 23 May 2023, NUM and NUMSA revised their demands to 11% and 12% respectively, whilst Solidarity revised its demand to 9.5%. On Wednesday, 24 May 2023, Eskom revised its offer and made a final offer of 5.25%.

“Eskom’s final offer was rejected by all trade unions. However, all parties reached a settlement on the amendment of the Grievance and Disciplinary Procedures,” Eskom said.

Meanwhile, Eskom will implement Stage 6 load shedding from 4pm until 5am on Tuesday morning.

Following that, Stage 4 load shedding will be implemented until 4pm with the pattern repeating until further notice.

The power utility had announced that it will implement Stage 5 load shedding during evenings but had to ramp up the stage due to “delays in returning ten generating units to service”. – SAnews.gov.za

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