Kagem Mining Limited in Lufwanyama has announced plans to increase emerald production from the current 37.993kg to 50.758Kg in the next five years.
When Copperbelt Province Minister Elisha Matambo toured the mining firm on Monday, Kagem general manager Sanjeev Kumar said the company has projected a revenue generation of US$136.53 million in the next five years from the current revenue generation of US$ 100million.
Company general manager Sanjeev Kumar said the mining firm also expects emerald production of 50.758Kg in the next five years from the current 37.993kg in 2022.
Mr. Kumar said Kagem is seeking to grow its revenue generation to US$136.53m from US$100m this year.
He said the company saw a setback in 2020 when operations were suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic in which revenue generation reduced to US$22.38m in 2020 from US$82.38m in 2019.
“The company’s operations were suspended for a year from March 2020 to March 2021 due to COVID-19 and during that period employees on leave continued getting their salaries with the support of Gemfield group,” Mr Kumar said.
Mr Kumar further highlighted Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes Kagem has embarked on in Lufwanyama.
He said Kagem plans to construct a skills training center in Lufwanyama which would enhance vocational skills in the area.
Mr Kumar said Kagem is determined to ensure that the local people benefited from its operations.
He added that the center would provide short course skills training and the trained youths would be considered priority for skills based employment in Kagem.
Meanwhile, Mr Matambo warned Kagem against the alleged continued sidelining of the local people when employing people.
The Copperbelt Minister urged the Kagem to prioritize job opportunities for the locals stating that it was disappointing that the company had continued to sideline the local people.
Mr Matambo has also expressed displeasure over the continued trend by the mine to discriminate against certain suppliers.
“Heal the wound of suppliers that were not given contracts in Kagem mine, give them a chance. There was total discrimination and this has been going on, people were suppressed and it has not been addressed. There were conditions attached to being a supplier for Kagem and it has to come to an end,” he said.
Mr Matambo also urged the mining firm to enhance its corporate social responsibility in its operational area.
Meanwhile, Mr Matambo was pleased with the investments so far and was happy that the company plans to grow its revenue generation.
He guaranteed Government commitment to supporting the company adding that Government would ensure to continue creating an environment that would attract more investment in the province.