Zam­bia has po­ten­tial to raise cop­per pro­duc­tion to 1-1.5-mil­lion tons an­nu­ally; dou­ble the 1972 pre-na­tion­al­iza­tion pro­duc­tion lev­els

Zambian Business Times - - MINING -

Cham­ber of mines Pres­i­dent, in Africa’s sec­ond largest cop­per hotspot, Nathan Chishimba says from cur­rent in­di­ca­tions, Zam­bia can grow the sec­tor to pro­duce 1-mil­lion tons of Cop­per per an­num and then fur­ther up­ward to 1.5-mil­lion tons per an­num which is dou­ble the 1972 pre-na­tion­al­iza­tion pro­duc­tion lev­els, within the next six years. This was con­tained in a press re­lease is­sued by the cham­ber. Growth is the most sus­tain­able and in­clu­sive means to meet the ex­pec­ta­tions of all stake­hold­ers over time via mea­sur­able progress and in­creas­ing tax con­tri­bu­tion to the gov­ern­ment.

With con­tin­ued sta­bil­ity and a fo­cus on growth, Zam­bia will eas­ily at­tract ex­plo­ration cap­i­tal to ex­tend the cop­per min­ing in­dus­try’s life be­yond the twenty years of present proven bank­able re­serves of 20 mil­lion tons. By at­tract­ing ex­plo­ration cap­i­tal, we can in­crease our proven re­serves by over a mil­lion tons per year as we did from 1996 to 2005 and once again add decades to the in­dus­try life­span. The other thing in­dus­try seeks is the re­moval of cap­ping of carry for­ward loss ten­ure to ten years and the lim­it­ing to below 100 per cent of cap­i­tal al­lowance claims for equip­ment and mine build­ing ex­pen­di­ture in a year. This will shorten the break-even pe­riod for min­ing ex­pan­sion and new pro­jects thereby mak­ing the Cop­per­belt and North­west­ern prov­inces more at­trac­tive to min­ing com­pany man­agers, in­sti­tu­tional share­hold­ers and fi­nanciers than it is presently.

“We are con­fi­dent that sta­bil­ity in the fis­cal and reg­u­la­tory regime for min­ing com­pli­mented with a few more non-cash ac­tions such as restor­ing work­ing cap­i­tal tied up in Value Added Tax re­funds by off­set­ting against dues go­ing for­ward will go a long way in po­si­tion­ing the Zam­bian min­ing in­dus­try for dou­ble digit growth,” Mr. Chishimba said.

As a fur­ther means of en­hanc­ing Zam­bian own­er­ship in the min­ing sec­tor, we have also pro­posed that the State takes mea­sures to en­cour­age Zam­bians and Zam­bian in­sti­tu­tions to invest in ex­plo­ration by of­fer­ing them tax re­bates when they buy shares in such pro­jects. We be­lieve this will of­fer a bright fu­ture along the lines that our neigh­bor Botswana has en­joyed over their last 40 years of pol­icy sta­bil­ity in their min­ing sec­tor.

As a key sec­tor that rep­re­sents Zam­bia’s com­par­a­tive ad­van­tage in the global econ­omy, Zam­bian min­ing must be seen to be a world beater in cre­at­ing eco­nomic ad­van­tage and pros­per­ity for Zam­bia. This pros­per­ity man­i­fests itself in var­i­ous forms, in­clud­ing the at­trac­tive­ness of in­vest­ment for the na­tional econ­omy and creation of op­por­tu­ni­ties in man­u­fac­tur­ing, trad­ing, com­mu­ni­ca­tions and other com­mer­cial ac­tiv­ity. Zam­bia has seen a lot of ev­i­dence of this growth, which has in re­cent years spread to var­i­ous parts of the coun­try.

The Cham­ber Pres­i­dent added that, it is an un­de­ni­able fact that when min­ing does well, other eco­nomic fun­da­men­tals do well, and thus the op­por­tu­ni­ties in the Zam­bian econ­omy expand.

The Zam­bia Cham­ber of Mines has com­mit­ted itself to a prin­ci­ple of con­struc­tive en­gage­ment with the Gov­ern­ment of Zam­bia to en­sure that min­ing is car­ried on in a re­spon­si­ble and sus­tain­able man­ner at all lev­els, whether by for­eign or lo­cal investors. We be­lieve this is the ba­sis on which a very healthy level of mu­tual trust and con­fi­dence has been cul­ti­vated, that has seen some rel­a­tive sta­bil­ity in the reg­u­la­tory en­vi­ron­ment for min­ing in Zam­bia in re­cent years. It is the Cham­ber’s con­vic­tion that this re­cent sta­bil­ity po­si­tions Zam­bia as one of the pri­mary des­ti­na­tions for much needed in­vest­ment in op­er­a­tions and de­vel­op­ment

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