The Sub-Saharan Africa insights for Analysis for Economics and Country Risk has predicted an increase in the global market Copper demand from 2021 to 2035.
The organisation’s Country Risk Head Thea Fourie says her organizations’ assessment has shown that the Copper demand will crease from 8 million to 20 million tonnes by the year 2035.
And the Global Market Intelligence Analysis Centre revealed that China will continue to be the major consumer of copper due to anticipated demand for electric Car battery manufacturing and investments into green energy.
Speaking during the 10th Zambia International Mining and Energy Conference on Wednesday, when she made a presentation on ‘How Zambia can increase Copper production from 800, 000 to three million metric tonnes per annum over the next decade’ Ms. Fourie said Zambia has a greater opportunity to grow its mining industry.
“Zambia has greater opportunity to grow the mining industry and achieving general economic growth especially with the existing resolve by the current administration to increase copper production to 3 million metric tonnes per annum in the next 10 years,” Ms. Fourie
The Head of Sub-Saharan Africa insights for Analysis for Economics and Country Risk, however warned that failure to make investment into copper mining may put copper deficit at around 10 million metric tonnes.
If the investment environment changes, the copper deficit can be reduced to 2 million metric tons during the same period of 2021 to 2035 she argued.
And Ministry of Mines Permanent Secretary Mooya Lumamba says about 500 mining licenses have been frozen by the ministry of mines at the department of Cadaster following an audit aimed at ensuring proper and corrupt free issuance of mining licenses.
The audit established that the ministry had about 100 expired mining licenses in its system which has since being cleared up to pave way for new applications to ensure the attainment of the set strategies towards the attainment of the projected increase in copper production in the country.
“Currently, Government is not accepting applications for mining licenses but effective 21st November 2022, the cadaster Department will be opened for licence applications, during the audit, we also found that some companies had about 80 inactive mining licenses which have since been frozen and the owners are now writing to us,” Mr. Lubamba said during the same meeting.
And Director of Geological survey at the Ministry of Mines Gerald Mwila says the Ministry is financially constrained to conduct a 100 per cent geological mapping which currently stands at 54 per cent mapping.
Mr. Mwila told the meeting that the ministry was however targeting minerals such as cobalt and uranium among others.
Earlier, Konkola Copper Mines head of Copper Production Obino Kalela revealed that Copper production from the mine has declined from 200, 000 to 100, 000 metric tonnes per annum.
Attributing the drop to lack of re-capitalization at the mine, Mr. Kalela called for financial injection in the mine if it is to massively contribute to the projected Copper production increase.
Meanwhile, oil Marketing Companies ( OMCs) operating in Zambia will have to bring in approximately 1.2 billion litres of fuel to support the mining industry to attain the projected increase in copper production of about 3 million metric tonnes per annum.
Head of Lubricants for Africa Puma Energy Stanley Chipeta says currently the mines consume about 400 million litres of fuel per annum.
Speaking during the meeting, Mr.. Chipeta however, noted that there is need to resolve issues around storage and transportation of fuel.