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Stakeholder engagement

The outcomes of stakeholder engagement – the concerns of our primary stakeholders – are important determinants of Sibanye-Stillwater’s material issues and hence inform decisions taken to control risk and identify opportunities for the business.

Sibanye-Stillwater is committed to proactive, open and constructive stakeholder engagement, which informs participative decision-making. Our stakeholder engagement aims to:

  • strategically inculcate a culture of effective engagement within the organisation
  • develop and implement formal and informal systems of communication for the benefit of the Group and stakeholders
  • ensure regular engagement and response to issues material to stakeholders
  • accurately understand the influence of business activities on stakeholders and the potential impact stakeholders may have on the business, whether positive or negative, to enhance the engagement process
  • ensure engagement is conducted in a timely, accurate and relevant manner
  • continuously monitor, review and improve engagement activities

As a responsible corporate citizen, Sibanye-Stillwater fosters and maintains constructive engagement with all stakeholders in order to deliver on our vision to create superior value for all stakeholders, to maintain our licence to operate, and ultimately for the long-term success and sustainability of the business.

The Board’s performance and interaction with stakeholders is guided by the South African Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, and management is tasked with the development, and implementation of corporate citizenship policies and programmes for relevant stakeholders.

Sibanye-Stillwater expects employees and communities to appreciate the importance that a profitable and sustainable business holds for them and the other stakeholders who rely on the mining industry.

REFLECTING ON STAKEHOLDERS

INVESTORS AND MARKET ANALYSTS

Excluding Gold One, which represents a consortium of Chinese investors who have acquired a strategic 20% stake in the Group, Sibanye-Stillwater’s investors are primarily geographically diverse institutional investors, located predominantly in the US and South Africa. Engagement is regular and structured with quarterly operational updates, and more detailed six-monthly operational and financial reviews, which enable investors to engage directly with management via live webcast or conference calls. Senior management also undertakes regular global roadshows to interact directly with current and prospective investors. Shareholders expect management to deliver on operational forecasts and the communicated corporate strategy. Adherence to the highest standards of corporate governance are expected. Shareholder investment strategies and tenures differ, making it difficult to target and cater to specific investor groups. A consistent and transparent strategy is crucial to building investor confidence.

Sibanye-Stillwater is widely covered by sell-side analysts who provide investment research and advice to existing and prospective institutional investors. Sell-side analysts tend to do relatively detailed and in-depth analyses of relevant sectors and companies, including peer-group comparisons and benchmarking. Sibanye-Stillwater is comprehensively covered by local and international sell-side analysts from smaller brokers to global, bulge bracket banks. At least nine analysts produce independent research on the Group at any given time.

SUPPLIERS AND CONTRACTORS

Sibanye-Stillwater has categorised its suppliers and contractors into three groups: strategic, tactical and local. Strategic suppliers provide services and products that could have a high impact on Sibanye-Stillwater’s operations, such as reagents and underground support. Without their inputs, production would be seriously hampered. Engagement with them is interactive and contracted to minimise any potential risk to production. Continuous innovation would enhance solutions and drive down costs. A highly interactive partnership ensures that Sibanye-Stillwater’s ability to produce is enhanced.

Tactical suppliers provide Sibanye-Stillwater with the bulk of the day-to-day goods and services required for production. Engagement with these suppliers takes place at an operational level and any issues are managed through the supply chain, which is bound by the Group’s procurement policy. The quality and cost of goods and services are managed through tenders and the ordering process.

Local suppliers are small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) within communities around Sibanye-Stillwater’s operations. Engagement is highly active as the Group needs to develop and grow these suppliers to enable them to support local economic development (LED) and job creation. The skills and experience of local suppliers need to be developed and enhanced to ensure good-quality and sustainable supply of goods and services. These stakeholders expect to play an active and sizeable role in Sibanye-Stillwater’s supply chain.

CHAMBER OF MINES AND INDUSTRY PEERS

Sibanye-Stillwater engages regularly with its peers in the gold, platinum, coal and bulk minerals segments. Collaborative engagement, involving non-competitive issues of common interest, is more prevalent in the gold sector with information and other lessons, particularly sharing health and safety management and community engagement, and collaboration is actively pursued where it can be more effective. The Group also co-operates in strategic industry interventions with potential for synergies. Co-operation is based on agreed mechanisms for and mature rules of engagement. Among gold-mining companies, particularly, co-operation to promote achievement of common goals is strong.

The Chamber of Mines, which plays an important role in expediting peer engagement and in lobbying national government on behalf of the industry, protects the collective interests of mining companies and promotes a positive image of the mining sector as being progressive, transformed and effective, in consultation with other national stakeholders. Chamber membership is voluntary and most major South African mining companies are members.

The Chamber provides a platform, through company representation on collective committee structures, to discuss matters of strategic importance to the mining industry and to provide a mandate to the Chamber. Experts within the Chamber provide leadership in strategic thinking on a broad range of policy domains. Established communication channels are in place to secure strong alignment between the Chamber and its members.

EMPLOYEES AND ORGANISED LABOUR

Sibanye-Stillwater employs 46,269 people with a diverse set of skills, and various educational and cultural backgrounds. They provide services ranging from core mining to processing and support services. Engagement varies, based on the nature of the issue and level of employee. Engagement with management is generally constructive.

Allied to engagement with employees is engagement with organised labour, which includes unions representing certain employee categories, principally those involved in core mining and processing. The unions with whom Sibanye-Stillwater engages are AMCU, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), the United Association of South Africa (UASA) and Solidarity. The nature of this engagement is formal. Wage negotiations, conducted collectively for the gold producers under the auspices of the Chamber of Mines, are the most visible subject in union engagement. Inter-union rivalry and its effects are a major concern. Sibanye-Stillwater’s engagement and interaction with the unions is generally respectful and constructive.

Since listing, Sibanye-Stillwater has made significant effort to re-establish direct lines of communication with its employees. Given the close contact and consistent communication, there has been a shift from an adversarial to a more collaborative approach, albeit with some level of scepticism. Sustainable employment, higher wages and benefits are the main tangible employee expectations. However, they also expect a relationship based on values. Union relationships tend to be more complex with a clear political influence affecting relations. The quality of the relationship with employees is evident in greater participation in Group programmes, feedback and the degree of workplace disruptions.

COMMUNITY AND CONSULTATIVE FORUMS

Communities in the vicinity of and affected by Sibanye-Stillwater’s operations, together with those in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) labour-sending areas, are an important stakeholder grouping. Engagement is undertaken with formal and informal representatives through community and consultative forums as well as civic groups, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and other special-interest groups. These forums, which are often multi-stakeholder in nature, comprise local community leaders and representatives as well as local government officials. They address issues of mutual concern, such as employment and LED, especially business development and access to supply chain opportunities. The forums have introduced greater degrees of transparency and openness between Sibanye-Stillwater and communities. Ongoing, structured engagement facilitates positive dialogue to identify and address the negative impacts of mining on communities. The chief focus is to identify, discuss and resolve issues affecting communities.

REGULATOR, NATIONAL, PROVINCIAL AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Sibanye-Stillwater engages with all levels of government and various government departments but principally with office bearers based in the Gauteng and Free State, as well as (following the Burnstone acquisition) the Mpumalanga regional offices of the DMR regarding safety and mining rights. Other departments with which Sibanye-Stillwater engages include environmental affairs, water and sanitation, labour, health and education, among others.

Engagement with the national offices is on an as-and-when-needed basis. Engagement is ongoing and generally robust yet constructive. Inconsistencies in the application of regulatory requirements and individuals’ preferences can be problematic, and engagement at local level is frequently included in the community and consultative forums in which local government is represented.

Other regulators with whom Sibanye-Stillwater engages are the National Nuclear Regulator and National Energy Regulator of South Africa as well as the JSE, the NYSE and US SEC regarding its stock-exchange listings.