VANCOUVER, Sept. 3 /CNW/ - Rockwell Diamonds Inc ("Rockwell" or the
"Company") (TSX: RDI; JSE: RDI; OTCBB: RDIAF) reports on the resolution of
industrial action at its Wouterspan Mine and finalization of wage negotiations
with the National Union of Mineworkers (the "NUM"). NUM represents the
majority of the Company's employees. Operations will resume at all of the
Company's mines on Wednesday September 3, 2008.
Following negotiations between the Company and the NUM, the parties have
settled the disciplinary procedure and hearing initiated against employees at
its Wouterspan Mine on the Middle Orange River in the Northern Cape Province
of South Africa. As reported in a news release of July 25, 2008 this action
was initiated following illegal strike action at this mine.
During discussions and negotiations with the NUM in respect of the
Wouterspan industrial action, the Company was also able to conclude wage
negotiations which were implemented in June 2008. These negotiations reached a
deadlock in mid August and were followed by work stoppages at the Company's
The Company has agreed on a 13.5% increase on the basic wage paid to its
employees, excluding management levels. This increase is in line with latest
consumer price inflation figures for South Africa.
During the industrial action and work stoppages experienced by the
Company, Rockwell was able to maintain day time shift production through the
efforts of its mine management and supervisor teams supported by non-unionized
employees, at its Saxendrift, Wouterspan and Klipdam operations. Health and
Safety procedures were adhered to at all times, routine maintenance and
repairs, as well as upgrades of certain plant and equipment was performed
during the period of industrial action.
As a consequence of the Wouterspan industrial action and stoppages
experienced due to wage issues, the Company has experienced production losses
during late July and the month of August, with production falling by
approximately 55% for the month of August.
No delays were experienced with the fabrication and construction of the
Company's new high-volume Wet-Rotary Pan Plant being constructed on the
Saxendrift property. Start-up of this plant is scheduled for early November
President and CEO John Bristow noted "We are pleased to have successfully
resolved the Wouterspan industrial action and wage negotiations in
constructive dialog with our employees and the National Union of Mineworkers.
Our negotiations and discussions with the NUM have allowed the Company and its
employees to table and discuss challenges faced by both parties and to put
forward improved communication and information sharing procedures. We will be
implementing some of the ideas put forward including more regular meeting
forums and other dispute resolution mechanisms for the Company and its
President and CEO
No regulatory authority has approved or disapproved the information
contained in this news release.
Forward Looking Statements
This release includes certain statements that may be deemed
"forward-looking statements". Other than statements of historical fact all
statements in this release that address future production, reserve or resource
potential, exploration drilling, exploitation activities and events or
developments that each Company expects are forward-looking statements.
Although the Company believes the expectations expressed in such
forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such
statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or
developments may differ materially from those in the forward-looking
statements. There is no certainty of the financing completing. Factors that
could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking
statements include market prices, exploitation and exploration successes,
changes in and the effect of government policies regarding mining and natural
resource exploration and exploitation, availability of capital and financing,
geopolitical uncertainty and political and economic instability, and general
economic, and market or business conditions. Investors are cautioned that any
such statements are not guarantees of future performance and that actual
results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the
forward-looking statements. For more information on Rockwell, Investors should
review Rockwell's annual Form 20-F filing with the United States Securities
and Exchange Commission www.sec.com and the Company's home jurisdiction
filings that are available at www.sedar.com.
For further information:
For further information: on Rockwell Diamonds Inc., please visit the
Company's website at www.rockwelldiamonds.com or contact Investor Services at
(604) 684-6365 or within North America at 1-800-667-2114