Government sees end to mine tax impasse

The Ministry of Mines says Zambia is still capable of beating the Democratic Republic of Congo’s copper production output because of the country’s favourable conditions.

And the ministry says the ongoing mining fiscal regime impasse that is disturbing the sector will soon be resolved and is sure “everyone will be happy.”

According to the 2015 Deloitte State of Mining in Africa report, new data shows that copper production in the DRC will continue to outstrip Zambian production for the next five years, despite being ranked the least attractive investment destination on the continent in terms of ‘ease of doing business’.

The DRC managed to produce over 900,000 tonnes of copper in 2013, registering a sharp rise, surpassing Zambia’s 754,916 tonnes produced that year.

According to the copper production profile for both countries, production estimates are projected to be around 1.5 million metric tonnes for Zambia, against 1.7 million metric tonnes for the DRC by 2020.

But mines acting permanent secretary Paul Chanda, in an interview, said Zambia was still very capable of beating its northern neighbour as the former enjoyed better socio-economic conditions.

“We are very capable. There are a lot of factors involved in this industry and we have a very stable political environment. Economically, we are doing better, so we command that confidence with the financing institutions, so we will catch up,” he said.

Chanda said the government was in the process of lining up new investors, which would also be expected to add to existing production.

“We are inviting more investors in this industry. It is competitive, but we are trying. Some of our mines are very old, but we are opening up like at Mopani [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][who are] starting new shafts and when those are completed and smelters coming up, investors will also have to increase production to make use of those huge investments,” he added, explaining that the DRC was only doing well now because they have higher grade copper.

And Chanda said discussions with mining houses over the raised mineral royalties were progressing well.

“They (discussions) are progressing well, although it is still at preliminary level just by way of meeting, so there is a lot of hope. I am sure everyone will be happy since all parties are involved,” said Chanda, without disclosing details of whether cost structures for individual mining companies are critically being analysed.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Zambia Declared Most Peaceful Country In Africa

The concept of peace is difficult to define – and even more difficult to measure. However, since 2006 the Global Peace Index has defined peace as the “absence of violence” and has sought to determine what cultural attributes and institutions are associated with states of peace. The most recent ranking has Zambia as the most peaceful African country. Somalia is considered the least peaceful country followed by South Africa and Sudan.

The Global Peace Index (GPI) defines a nation at “peace” as being one “not involved in violent conflicts with neighboring states or suffering internal wars” – which is sometimes called “negative peace” (i.e., absence of war). This is more measurable and can be used as a starting point to identify the attributes of “positive peace” (structures and institutions that create and maintain peace).

Top 5 peaceful countries in Africa are as follows:

  1. Zambia
  2. Island of Mauritius
  3. Botswana
  4. Chad
  5. Burundi

GEMFIELS sets another record at Lusaka Emerald auction

At least $14.5 million has been realized at the seventh Kagem local auction of precious stones held in Lusaka last month, Gemfields, has announced.

Chief Executive Officer Mr. Ian Harebottle said the stones auctioned were of lower quality rough emerald and Beryl from Kagem mine in Ndola rural.

“”We’ve set another record for realized per carat prices at an auction of lower quality emerald and beryl, and have now completed seven successful auctions in Zambia, all during the last 22 months.

It is pleasing to see a total of 88% of the total value of the lots placed on offer being bought and Zambian emeralds continuing to enjoy such firm demand.

Gemfields is increasingly becoming the supplier of choice for many of the world’s leading polishing and jewellery-manufacturing houses.

We look forward to our auction of lower quality Montepuez ruby in Jaipur later this month where we believe the market is as excited as we are to be a part of this first ever offering of such a considerable volume of non-domestic ruby rough in India.” Said Harebottle.

A total of 21 companies bid in what was the third Gemfields auction of Kagem emeralds during the current financial year (ending 30 June 2015). The auction was the seventh to be held in Lusaka, a practice which commenced in April 2013.

The auction saw 10.1 million carats of lower quality emerald and beryl extracted from Kagem placed on offer, with 19 of the 26 lots offered being sold, generating auction revenues of USD 14.5 million.

Kariba Minerals also participated for the first time in the Lusaka auction. The firm place an amethyst bid. Gemfields has 50 percent interest in Kariba Minerals.

This auction of rough amethyst from Kariba Minerals Limited (in which Gemfields has a 50% interest) was the first to be held within Zambia. Gemfields has hosted only one prior rough amethyst auction which took place in Jaipur in March 2011 and was used to test demand for amethyst in that market.

The amethyst auction saw 27.7 million carats of higher quality amethyst extracted from Kariba placed on offer, with 13 of the 14 lots offered being sold, generating auction revenues of USD 0.45 million. The amethyst auction realized an overall average value of 1.77 US cents per carat.