June 12, 2012 / 6:25 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Eastern Platinum may cut jobs at S.Africa mine

June 12 (Reuters) - Eastern Platinum Ltd could cut jobs at its Crocodile River Mine in South Africa as costs rise and platinum prices fall.

The management of Crocodile River Mine will consult with potentially affected employees to review the need for a possible restructuring, Eastern Platinum said.

The company, which last month stopped funding its Mareesburg mine and Kennedy’s Vale concentrator plant in South Africa, also ended a $100 million financing package to develop the Mareesburg mine.

Spot platinum prices have fallen 12 percent in the last four months to $1,436.28 an ounce, as demand for the metal used to build emissions-cutting catalytic converters in automobiles, has remained weak.

Falling prices have also forced Aquarius Platinum Ltd , the world’s fourth-largest platinum producer, to say on Monday that it will suspend operations at its Marikana joint venture in South Africa.

Shares of Eastern Platinum, which reported losses for the last two quarters, have more than halved in value this year. The stock was flat at 24 Canadian cents on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

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