Zambian mines require more state ownership

18 Dec 2020

Amid a pandemic, Zambia is looking to gain more from its mineral wealth beyond taxes in order to support the country’s economic recovery.

President Edgar Lungu noted the need to add on to the control within the mining sector. Zambia’s main generator of hard currency is the mining sector, making it Africa’s second-biggest copper producer. 

Lungu said, “Owning a stake in some strategic mines gives the state the leverage required to utilise the defined mineral resources to benefit the nation.”

He continued to emphasise the importance of the state targeting majority ownership but did not mention would mines would be chosen. “I must mention that this is not nationalism of the mines, on the contrary, it is the state acquiring majority stakes in selected mines while allowing private investors to also participate in the sector.” 

The country’s economic recovery plan is expected to lead to a growth of over 3% by 2022 as well as cut the fiscal deficit to 9% of gross domestic product in 2021.

This would then increase to 6.1% in 2022 and 4.9% in 2023.

“Through value addition to our God-given natural resources we are going to sell products created thereafter to earn the much-needed foreign exchange,” the Zambia president added on.