Stakeholders in the mining sector have called upon the Zambian government to quickly disclose information regarding Konkola Copper Mine (KCM) being revamped and provide direction on the way forward for the mine.
Speaking in an interview with Lusaka Star, Mines Expert Edward Simukonda said because of government’s silence on the KCM issue, it has been made difficult for people to say anything that will bring light to concerned Zambian citizens.
Mr. Simukonda said the public is being kept in the dark and no information is being released by the government to notify the public on how KCM resolutions are going.
He said it is unfortunate that the resolution has taken this long, stating that the delayal in the process may result in the mine failing to reach its target for the year.
“The target that they had put in place was to reach about 3 million metric tons per anum but with this kind of situation I don’t see us reaching that target,” Mr. Simukonda said.
He added that there are certain measures that need to be put in place to make sure that the country attracts good investors to help revamp the mining industry.
”It is not only the debt restructuring that will attract investors, it is the kind of conditions that have been set up and what is available for any investor to look at and come and invest in a country,” he added.
Meanwhile, an economist Kelvin Chisanga said there is need to look at a solution that will be more beneficial to the country and not the investors alone.
Mr. Chisanga said that this delay in resolving the KCM issue has a negative impact on the mining sector because the production levels of the mine have reduced.
“Even when the mining sector has been booming in terms of price growth and the transitions in green energy production, it has not given positive results for the country because Mopani and KCM are key elements in the production growth of the sector,” Mr. Chisanga said.
He said KCM is one of the biggest mining companies in the country that can be able to feed the whole of Chingola and Chililabombwe when it is fully operational.
This was said in reaction to community members in Chililabombwe and Chingola districts on the Copperbelt who are concerned at the reluctance by government regarding revamping KCM.