Neal Froneman, CEO of diversified precious metals producer Sibanye-Stillwater, has had public spats with minerals and energy minister Gwede Mantashe. Both are renowned for their bluntness, and they have rankled each other in the past. But the two remain on speaking terms.
First published in the Daily Maverick 168 weekly newspaper.
During a webinar this week with fund manager Ninety One, Froneman revealed that he had had a chat on the phone earlier that day with Mantashe.
"This morning, I received a call from the mines minister, acknowledging how well mining is currently doing and in his normal, humorous way, he pointed out to me that his portfolio in Cabinet is now being recognised for the first time as an industry that is not sunset. So that bodes well for mining in general in South Africa," Froneman said.
The mining industry is certainly doing well at the moment, thanks in large part to the current commodities boom, which was the focus of the webinar.
Sibanye earlier this month unveiled record quarterly earnings in the first three months of this year. Group adjusted Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) soared in Q1 by 78%,...