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Zambia files notice to seize Vedanta Copper Assets

Metal News - Published on Wed, 22 May 2019

Image Source: Reuters
Reuters reported that Zambia plans to strip Vedanta-controlled Konkola Copper Mines of its mining licence and bring a new investor into the operation, in a move likely to stoke international miners' concerns about rising government intervention in the sector. Zambian President Edgar Lungu announced the plan on Monday, which his spokesman said followed a number of breaches of the terms of the licence, without giving details. Zambia, Africa's second-biggest copper producer, has also proposed tax changes that Mr Lungu said that he will push through, despite opposition from international miners which say they will deter investment that Zambia desperately needs.

Some miners have already reduced or threatened to cut output, although First Quantum said it had abandoned plans to lay off workers. Union leaders on Monday called on Glencore to reverse its decision to close two shafts.

Mr Lungu said on Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation radio that "We are not shaken in our resolve to divorce (from some companies), starting with KCM, and we have filed that notification.”

The plan mirrors moves in other parts of Africa, where countries are trying to secure greater benefits from natural resources being managed by foreign companies.

Vedanta said it was seeking an urgent meeting with Mr Lungu over the future of KCM and that it had not received formal communication from the government on KCM.

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Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Wed, 22 May 2019
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