“If you want to move mountains tomorrow, you must start by lifting stones today” – African Proverb
The above quote is very appropriate especially in the physical reality of the Platinum Mining Industry, but today is the start of the moving of symbolic stones to move symbolic mountains for South Africa in the future.
This very significant Agreement was signed between Anglo American Platinum and Metal Concentrators this morning at the Anglo American Platinum offices in downtown Johannesburg. The Agreement is an extension of the Platinum Financial scheme which commenced in 2006 and makes Platinum available to the South African Jewellery industry at a fixed rate with payment terms.
Entry into the competitive world of precious metal is mainly constricted to new entrants due to the expensive prices of precious metal. It is risky and expensive to buy Platinum, manufacture sellable goods and sell them within a very short period to make enough margin to justify the cost of carrying the beneficiated material during the manufacturing process. This Finance Scheme makes it possible for local Jewellers who qualify to have access to fine Platinum and some breathing space to create a beautiful piece at a fixed cost and have a bit of time to sell the product. Alternatively, to cost the piece beforehand, get the order fixed and paid for within the terms of the Financing scheme. This partnership between Metal Concentrators and Anglo American Platinum opens up a few opportunities for South African Jewellers – whether you are a young start-up or an established Jeweller.
Jewellers and designers now have an opportunity which makes it far easier to learn and grow in the exciting world of Jewellery Manufacturing. The aim is to harness our local talent and create unique opportunities for enthusiastic, hardworking creatives.
There are a few goals which these two Companies would like to achieve with this partnership:
- Increase the use and promotion of Platinum within South Africa. South Africa is the main producer of Platinum worldwide and it makes complete sense to promote this rare precious metal in its’ country of origin.
- It is in both Companies’ interest to promote and support the local Jewellery Industry. Currently 31% of Platinum is used to manufacture Jewellery Internationally but a very small percentage is manufactured within South Africa. Other countries are creating wealth with South African Precious metal. This trend should be reversed.
- The two Companies want to cement the partnership by taking up the challenge to build the South African Precious Metal Industry from the beginning to the end of the value chain – From picking up stones to manufacturing heirlooms.
- The Platinum Partnership will set a benchmark for other players in the Industry to create systems which will stimulate the process of putting the South African precious metal Industry back where it belongs: A positive force to build up the Country to the advantage of every South African.
- Platinum as an Investment metal is at a very good opportunity level for beneficiation at the moment and the Platinum Partnership wants to use this timing to give South Africans the opportunity to benefit and grow their businesses.
The two Companies, Anglo American Platinum and Metal Concentrators, have also been co-hosts of the annual PlatAfrica jewellery design and manufacture competition. Since 1999, PlatAfrica affords students, apprentices and professional jewellers an opportunity to work with this precious metal and provides a platform on which they can showcase their creativity, design and manufacturing skills. This glamorous event ensures that the industry continues to be injected with fresh new designers
Says Jill Wolfe, Head of Marketing at Anglo American Platinum, “Anglo American Platinum is looking forward to further strengthening its collaboration with Metal Concentrators to grow the local market. The Metal Concentrators team shares our passion, with a strong drive to grow the South African platinum footprint.”
“We truly believe that South Africa is rich with design, innovation and desire to compete globally. Together with Anglo American Platinum, we are looking forward to developing the local industry.” – Neville Crosse, CEO of Metal Concentrators.
The two stakeholders signed the Agreement at 13h00 at a small ceremony which underplayed the potential for South Africa and making the riches of the land available to everyone willing to contribute to the bigger picture of a prosperous Industry. Platinum beneficiation has the potential to change the course of South Africa’s history in a positive direction. It is time South Africans take charge of this fantastic metal and the potential it holds. Due to South Africa’s rich deposits of Platinum, it is one of our country’s major competitive advantages and should be promoted as such.
South Africa needs economic growth and we need to get our precious metal beneficiation industry back where it belongs. Every single ounce of precious platinum taken out of South African soil needs to be processed and turned into high quality products which can compete in the International Market. As one of the rarest metals, South Africans should feel proud that we are the biggest producer of Platinum in the world.
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