A PGM bull run has put the wind in the sails of the South African platinum miners. While the rest of the global economy blows hot and cold, the mining industry, and especially the platinum sector, has been firing on all cylinders and bulging back pockets have prompted many to consider attractive mergers or acquisitions.

Others are investing in expansions, new shafts, and exploration projects that were put on ice a few years ago under stifling operating conditions. Although the business environment in South Africa can still be described as extremely tough, a surge in demand for platinum group metals, especially in China, has brought smiles to the faces of executives in a time when happiness is not a regular, day-to-day emotion.

Last week, MTE Exhibitions further broadened those smiles when they brought suppliers and decision makers together in face-to-face meetings almost unheard of in the time of Covid-19. MTE took their show to the North West province of South Africa in a week in which the platinum belt churned out record tonnages of PGMs and during which platinum companies announced record profits and big dividends. Naturally, there was not a shortage of exhibitors strutting their stuff in Mooinooi and Rustenburg on the Western Limb of the Bushveld Igneous Complex.

With a whiff of winter in the mid-afternoon breeze, MTE flew the orange and yellow flag and got feet through the gates – feet starved of proper interaction during lockdown. Under strict Covid-19 health and safety protocols a good time was had by all, but above all, MTE achieved what they’d set out to do: bring together the mining fraternity and introduce suppliers and decision makers in a bid to grow the South African mining industry.