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Minister assures investors as partners in development

CAROLINE KALOMBE, Solwezi
GOVERNMENT will continue to dialogue and address challenges experienced by investors, Deputy Minister of Finance Christopher Mvunga has said.
Mr Mvunga said in Solwezi on Wednesday that Government would also continue creating a favourable environment for growing the economy.
He said this during a familiarisation tour of the US$2 billion Kalumbila Trident Mine, noting that Zambia is still a favourable destination for foreign direct investment (FDI).
“We are a friendly Government and investor-friendly.  Our visit is to give you the government perspective and encourage you,” he said.
Mr Mvunga said Government is aware of challenges faced by investors and that it will continue to work closely with them to explore ways in which the problems can be addressed.
He said Government will put in place policies that protect investment while at the same time growing the Zambian economy, and that this can be achieved through dialogue among stakeholders.
Mr Mvunga said the Kalumbila Trident Mine project is critical to the country because of the huge potential to improve people’s livelihood through job opportunities, education and skills training.
Kalumbila Trident Mine general manager Rudi Badenhorst said the operation will be the largest single low grade copper producing mine in Africa with an output of about 300,000 metric tonnes per annum.
Mr Badenhorst said Sentinel Mine, which has been commissioned, will only be fully operational by the end of the year.
He said most of the infrastructure has been put in place but that the mine still needs to connect to the power grid as it is currently using electricity generators.
Mr Badenhorst said the mine has connection lines with Lumwana Mine through Kasempa and Mumbejhi but it is waiting for ZESCO’s final connection to Lusaka West.
He said the project will not concentrate on mining as it has so far spent US$20 million to build a town complete with a clinic, police station and school.
Mr Badenhorst said a timber factory, which has so far employed over 100 local youths, builds furniture for the school.
He said the timber comes from trees cut during the clearing of land for the mine and other infrastructure.


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