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Alba Iulia
Friday, June 5, 2020

U-Turn on the 7.5% importation Duty on Copper is evidence of Visionless leadership-Sinkamba

Economy U-Turn on the 7.5% importation Duty on Copper is evidence of Visionless...

Green party aspirant candidate peter sinkamba accompanied by his wife found casting his vote at Rokana polling station in Nkana constituency. Pictures by Sylvia mweetwa
Green party Leader Peter Sinkamba


Today, Wednesday, 21 December, 2016 the PF Government decided to reverse the 7.5% duty on importation of copper concentrates proposed in the budget for 2017. The reversal is clear evidence of lack of capable and visionary national leadership in Government keen to promote a new integrated development approach to mineral resources exploitation. If Government had an efficient administration in mineral resources exploitation, and sound national governance framework and practices, as well as coherent state strategies across key linkages in the Ministries of Mining, Trade and Industry, and Finance, the proposed import duty would not have been contemplated in the first place.

Our copper ore reserves are depleting very fast. Underground mining operations are becoming very expensive to operate, especially with escalating energy costs, coupled with low copper prices and failure by mining and exploration companies to strike any significant new ore reserves in the recent years. With this hindsight, the most prudent strategy for a capable and visionary national leadership is to promote importation of concentrates cheaply into the country. Further, it is critical, as a matter of policy, for government to promote toll-treatment across the sector and encourage participation of small-scale mineral traders in mineral backward, forward and side-stream value-chains. By so doing, we can easily double the tonnage of copper cathodes exports. With political instability in DRC, our second largest trading partner, scaling-up importation of cheap concentrates into Zambia is the way to go. Zambia has a huge smelting capacity which at the moment is operating below optimum capacity.

Besides focus on mineral sector for basic mining jobs, it is imperative to redeem the sector so that it becomes vibrant once more several institutional and strategic reforms so that it becomes an enabler of green technologies. One of key area we could harness is sulphate and sulphuric acid surplus on the Copperbelt and in Northwestern Province, which currently we are wasting to pollute rivers and streams. These resources could be used to diversify the economy from copper-export dependent to phosphate and fertilizer production for high-value agricultural development. Sulphuric acid could also be used as an enabler of biomass projects including biofuels, electricity generation, fibre (hemp) crops production etc. We could also convert them tp other forms of sulphur such as concentrated Sulphur dioxide solution or elemental Sulphur all of which we import at the moment. There is a huge market at local, national and regional markets for excess quantities.

Peter Sinkamba

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    • This failed drunken so-called lawyer that is squatting in State House probably does not even understand what Sinkamba is talking about!

      He only knows stealing elections and being an international tourist at taxpayers expense, while we have load-shedding and economic collapse in Zambia.

      How long can Zambians tolerate such a clueless lack of real leadership?

  1. Mutati can mislead the nation and he is already misleading the clueless gullible Lungu led government. He just talks minus brains. He talked about refinancing the Eurobond convincingly only to be exposed by the IMF official that what he was suggesting would actually land the country in more serious economic problems and he could’nt even argue his case, and now this back tracking on mining tax clearly shows that we have another Chikwanda at the Ministry of finance.

  2. Its great how Sinkamba is making so much sense these days. He has really matured as a politician and is communicating his ideas more clearly and convincingly. He needs to join a serious party to stand a chance of winning.

  3. I wish every business should have it fair share of tax and contribute to the revenue base of the country. However, where one sector is favoured and others not, the result is the economy becomes dependant on the favour sector. it is time the mines are made to bear their cost without government’s concessions on duty, tarriffs Vat , paye and royalty fees. Some zambian’s companies are folding up and yet government is not bailing them out or making concessions.
    Practically, government cannot continue standing for the mines for long as one day they must stand on their own. If mines are not economical viable , the they must go bust. This will the prudent thing to do.

    The removal of the 7.5% proposal DOES NOT constitute a reversal because it was NOT implemented at all. Had it been upheld it’s effective date would have been 1st January 2017.

    • 7.5% was already projected in the 2017 budget. Its already a deficit before even the year starts! So now they have to look for money to cover were 7.5% was to cover.
      This is were we are saying do we really have technocrats in this government? why did they even come up with it in the first place?? Flip flopping all the way

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