Mines Minister RICHARD MUSUKWA has assured mine suppliers and contractors on the Copperbelt that they will not plead for business contracts from the mines anymore.
Mr. MUSUKWA says the government wants to see a big chunk of the business contracts being given to Zambian contractors.
He says the government wants to bring back the dignity of the Zambian contractors to the Copperbelt.
Mr. MUSUKWA was speaking in Kitwe when he met mine contractors and suppliers together with his counterparts from the Ministries of Finance BWALYA NG’ANDU and JOYCE SIMUKOKO.
And Association of Mine Suppliers and Contractors President AUGUSTINE MUBANGA complained that Zambian contractors have been sidelined by Mopani Copper Mines in preference to foreigners.
Mr. MUBANGA said the rates given to foreign contractors are way too high compared to those given to local contractors doing the same kind of work.
He appealed to the government to come up with measures that compel mining companies to give equal business opportunities to local contractors.
And Finance Minister BWALYA NG’ANDU said the government will soon come up with measures that will protect local contractors from participating in businesses in the mining companies.
Meanwhile, Copperbelt Minister JAPHEN MWAKALOMBE assured the contractors that no contract jobs will be lost.
And Labour Minister JOYCE SIMUKOKO is disappointed with the actions by Mopani to place the mine under care and maintenance without following the law.