By Sean E. Tembo – PeP President
1. The bottom line is that there is plenty of gold across the country. Anyone who is interested in mining it can simply apply for an exploration license at the Department of Mines and it shall be given to you. Once you locate commercially viable deposits of gold with your exploration, then you can apply for a mining license and again, the Department of Mines will give it to you and you can set up your gold mine as a Zambian which will be owned by you 100%. Nobody will stop you. I personally know more than 10 prominent Zambians that are into the exploration business not only for gold but even for other deposits such as oil. Some are in the process of developing their mines.
2. Those Karma Mining Services guys who came from Sudan went and applied for an exploration license, got it, pumped money into exploration in Mumbwa, found commercially viable deposits of gold, applied for a mining license, got it then set up their mine which is operational as we speak. ZCCM-IH as an investor decided to buy some shares into the Mumbwa mine. Given that Karma is an international company with other business assets elsewhere, instead of ZCCM-IH buying shares into Karma Mining Services, they decided to set up an SPV called CGCZ in which ZCCM-IH owns 45% and Karma Mining Services owns 55%. This SPV will mine the gold at the Mumbwa site.
3. The SPV further decided to invest into a gold processing plant which will not only process gold from their Mumbwa mining site but also from various artisanal gold miners dotted all over the area. An artisanal miner is a small scale miner and this license category is reserved for Zambians only. There are more than 1,000 artisanal mining licenses that the Department of Mines has issued so far, for different mineral deposits including gold, manganese, emeralds etc.
4. CGCZ decided to establish an SPV to undertake this gold processing in Mumbwa in conjunction with Allay metals in which CGCZ owns 65% and Allay Metals owns 35%. A gold processing facility is like a smelter in the world of copper. Anyone can set up a gold processing facility and those involved in gold mining including artisanal gold miners will decide which processing facility to take their gold to for processing.
5. So now tell me, what are people crying about regarding the above arrangement? This is a totally commercial arrangement and no one said that these entities above will have a monopoly on gold exploration or mining in Zambia, no. So before ignorance kills you by arguing about things you don’t even understand, get out of social media, go and apply for a gold exploration license at the Department of Mines and become a proud gold mine owner in a few months or years.