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KONKOLA Copper Mines (KCM) must be serious and demonstrate why they are still in Zambia, Mines and Minerals Development Minister Richard Musukwa has said.

Mr Musukwa charged that KCM had lamentably failed to run the mine even before the new tax regime was introduced.

The Minister said if KCM management officials were serious, they should concentrate on developing the Konkola Deep Mining Project (KDMP) and the Nchanga Mine to increase production.

He was speaking in an interview in Chililabombwe.

Mr Musukwa said KCM should be the last mining company to talk about the new mining tax because it had always been a problem even before the tax was introduced.

“KCM should be the last mining company to talk about the newly-proposed mining tax because even before the tax was introduced they have always had problems. If anything, KCM must be serious and demonstrate why they are still around in Zambia,’’ he said.

Meanwhile, M Musukwa said mining companies should not use the newly-proposed mining tax as an excuse to give their workers meagre salary increments during negotiations.

Mr Musukwa said miners need decent conditions of services that would motivate them to work harder.

He said this after meeting members of management, union leaders and workers of Lubambe Copper Mines (LCM) in Chililabombwe.

“For workers to be motivated to work hard and increase production, they have to be given better and reasonable conditions of service. So we expect mining companies to give reasonable and acceptable salary increments to their workers,” he said.

However, Mr Musukwa also advised union leaders to make reasonable demands during the salary negotiations so that together they could achieve a win-win situation.

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