The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) said on Tuesday it had tabled a revised wage demand to strike-affected platinum producers, with the reduction seeing members ultimately receive the politically sensitive R12 500 pay figure over a three-year period.

Speaking at a media briefing in Johannesburg, Amcu president Joseph Mathunjwa said the revised demand, tabled last week, would give “breathing room” to producers. The offer tabled would freeze all benefit pay, such as housing allowance, but would see take-home pay for entry-level workers reach R12 500 in 2015, he said.

The strike, which will enter its seventh week on Thursday, has cost producers R6.7bn in revenue losses and workers R3bn in forfeited wages.

Producers have stood firm on a three-year deal of between 7.5% and 9%, which they say “pushes the boundaries of feasibility” in the embattled sector. Producers Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), Lonmin and Impala Platinum (Implats) had previously threatened to walk out of mediated talks under the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) after months of union intractability.

The CCMA talks between both parties are scheduled to continue on Tuesday.

The demand by Amcu, however, is still far beyond what employers are offering.

Entry-level mineworkers earn between R5000 and R5700, with the proposed increase increasing minimum pay to between R6300 and R7200, excluding benefits. Total cost of company under the employer offer would be between R10 900 and R11 900 in the third year.

Mr Mathunjwa said on Tuesday members were prepared to continue the strike, “even for six months”. The union, however, was willing to compromise, but the industry “continues to be arrogant and hard headed, not willing to succumb and revise their offer”.

The union had been faced with multiple attempts to disrupt the strike and cause divisions within Amcu, including court action by Amplats to sue the union for loss of income, infiltration of picketers and “character assassination” of Amcu leaders, he said.

Amcu, along with labour federation the National Council of Trade Unions (Nactu) would march on the Union Buildings on Thursday to hand a petition to President Jacob Zuma, the ministers of mineral resources, labour and public safety, and the CEOs of mining houses, he said.

The union expected 40 000 workers and community members to attend, to “voice our dissatisfaction” at how the state and companies had reacted to the strike, as well as in solidarity for the union’s wage demands.