Mining firms in Zambia call for favorable investment climate to boost production

LUSAKA, (Xinhua) — Mining firms in Zambia on Thursday said the time was ripe for Zambia to create a favorable investment climate for the sector to accelerate production in view of increased global demand for copper.

The Chamber of Mines Zambia, an association of foreign mining firms operating in Zambia, said opportunities for mining firms to expand their investment in mining countries were ripe hence the need for the countries to provide conducive environment for investment.

“In the wake of a growing demand for the metal, investors are seeing opportunities to invest if the host countries permit it. That permit comes in the form of enabling policies and legal regimes,” Godwin Beene, the association’s president told reporters during a press briefing.

He said there was need for Zambia to take advantage of the recent rise in the demand for the metal especially by China and western countries as they try to stimulate their economies in the wake of the COVID-19.

The switch to electrical vehicles further presents growth opportunities for copper mining in the long run, said Beene, noting that the association will continue engaging the government to ensure a favorable mining sector regime.

The sector, he said, wanted the government to remove the non-deductibility of the mineral royalty tax which he believed was a punitive tax deterring future investment and would change the mineral royalty sliding scale.

“The problem we are facing here is that royalty charged at every price trigger is very high compared to peer jurisdictions,” he added. 

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