Zambia is looking to realise greater profits from its mining industry. The Mines Minister Wilbur Simuusa was speaking to mine supplier and contractors at the Chingola mine club when he said that in terms of mineral resources they were the richest nation and yet they were counted amongst the poorest nations in the world.
The new Zambian president Michael Sata has introduced populist policies to ensure that the state has better control over the booming mining sector in the nation. The state run mining company called Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines Investments Holdings is to get a larger role in the mining sector soon.
The state run mining company is to get a higher stake in existing copper mines from the current 10 to 15% to nearly 35%. The Mines Minister Wilbur Simuusa also said the company would be also acquiring two new green field projects. These are new mining projects that are likely to be located outside the copper belt province in Zambia.
Small scale miners are also going to be encouraged as per the Mines Minister Wilbur Simuusa as a new fund is being set up for the mining sector. This fund will aim at providing loans to local junior miners. The minister said that the country had learnt from the Mining Sector Diversification Programme revolving fund that the European Union had dished out and would not be making the same mistakes.
The mining minster also said that there was a need to reorganize the gemstone industry. The poor export monitoring system was costing the government a lot of revenue said Simuusa. Last year the gemstone industry declared revenue of merely $2 million while the world market declared that nearly $700 million worth of gemstones were bought from Zambia.