FRANCISTOWN: Tati Nickel Mining Company (TNMC) remains optimistic about surviving the credit crunch, its General Manager, Seb Sebetlela, said at a press conference on Friday at the company's clubhouse in Francistown.
Sebetlela however conceded that the credit crunch was the mine's biggest challenge at the moment.
"If we managed to survive this first quarter, then we must be doing something right," he said. "We are following the road to survival."
He is hoping that Tati Nickel will emerge a better and more focused organisation at the end of the recession.
Sebetlela told the media that the mine had two main challenges as far as the credit crunch was concerned; these were the relatively low and fluctuating nickel prices and the depressed market.
The company was trying cost containment, rationalisation of inputs, labour optimisation and renegotiation of prices with its suppliers and contractors. "We are cutting in areas where we can and (cutting out) things that we can do without to preserve our resources," he said.
"Our suppliers and everyone has been very supportive," Sebetlela said.
Scrupulously avoiding the dreaded word retrenchment, he said the mine must do with what it had or less
Addressing the same press conference, Tati Nickel's Divisional Manager (responsible for) Organisational Capability said inspite of the present difficult times, the company had not abandoned its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme.
Peter Meswele said Phase I of TNMC's flagship project under this programme, which is the upgrading of maths and science resources in local schools, had ready been completed.
It involved equipping six junior secondary schools and one senior secondary school with computers with Internet connectivity, multimedia software, books and security at the cost of P1 million.
The second phase of the project, which will cost P2 million, will entail the purchasing and installation of computers and software for mathematics and science for use in remedial classes at the same schools.
Meswele said Botswana had problems in these subjects and that TNMC was doing its bit to help because the subjects were important in mining.