Sat, 04 Mar 2017 09:18:14 +0000
DEVELOPMENT minerals such as sand and gravel have the capacity to contribute to the economic growth of the country if the people mining the resource are adequately rewarded, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) assistant representative Ian Milimo has said.
Mr. Milimo said infrastructure was a product of development minerals.
He called for diversification in the development of such minerals in Zambia if the country’s economy was to benefit from all the natural resources it was endowed with.He said there was inequality and imbalance in the distribution of wealth in the development minerals value chain.
“When it comes to development of minerals such as sand stones and the quarry dust there is inequality around the country in the distribution of financial resources yet these minerals are mined by local miners who hardly benefit from them,’’ he said.
Mr Milimo said one of the contributing factors to the lack of balance in the distribution of wealth was the lack of knowledge by the miners of these minerals.
He said society had deepened poverty at one end while increasing wealth on the other end, creating an unbalanced wealth distribution value chain.
“Development minerals miners are not benefiting from their minerals. You will find that a miner can mine 20 tonnes of sand and sells it at K150 to someone who goes into the city and sells the sand for K2,000 and this is not a fair deal for the local miners,’’ he said. He said it was important for development mineral miners to benefit from the raw materials as they would be the ones affected once the resource depleted.