Government says it will soon pass a policy to compel mining firms to engage importers of their copper to set up processing plants for finished products in Zambia.
Minister of Mines Christopher Yaluma says it is unacceptable that Zambia continues importing finished products of copper mined in Zambia instead of manufacturing them from within the country.
Addressing a business delegation from South Africa’s Gauteng Province at his office today, Mr. Yaluma said adding value to copper will create a lot of jobs and contribute to revenue earnings.
He said exporting copper blisters denies Zambia revenue because it contains a lot of minerals which are disintegrated in the foreign processing plants.
The Minister adds that most small-scale miners are exploited by large firms who buy them off at low prices because they lack machinery for mining.
He is however delighted that the South African delegation which includes SA Capital Equipment is looking at Zambia as a potential market.
Mr. Yaluma notes that collaborations with equipment suppliers and small scale miners and farmers would help in growing the industries.
And delegation leader Lebogang Mallo who is from the Department of Economic Development, Environment, Agriculture and Rural Development said the province is looking at forging partnerships with neighboring countries in rolling investments.
Mr. Mallo said he wants to see Zambian companies setting base in South Africa while companies from that country also coming to Zambia to set up base as part of regional integration.
He said the visit is also part of laying ground for the Gauteng Premier’s visit to Zambia next year.
Meanwhile, SA Capital Equipment Chief Executive Officer Eric Bruggeman said Zambia has plenty of water and aqua culture his firm is interested in.
He has revealed plans of setting of setting up a hub on the Copper belt Province to encourage manufacturing of products locally by South African firms.