Thursday, October 13, 2011
TIME PUBLISHED - Thursday, October 13, 2011, 1:49 pm
Reuters reports that Zambia will negotiate larger shareholding in foreign mining companies and plans to revise the tax collection mechanism to improve transparency and maximize benefits for the country, the minister of mines said.
“We would like to increase our shareholding to at least 35 percent in all the projects but that will depend on how well we negotiate with the mining firms,” mines minister Wylbur Simuusa told Reuters in an interview late on Wednesday.
Simuusa said the decision to seek a higher stake in the mines did not amount to nationalization of the mining sector in Africa’s top copper producer.
Meanwhile, About 500 workers walked off the job on Thursday at Chambishi Metals cobalt plant, seeking higher wages from the Chinese-owned firm in Zambia, union officials said.
The strike is the latest labour action to hit the country since new President Michael Sata came to power a few weeks ago and emboldened workers by saying he will fight for better pay and working conditions.
The Chambishi cobalt plant is majority-owned by China Nonferrous Metals Mining Corporation.
More than 2,000 striking Zambians at other Chinese-owned mines went back to work this week after winning nearly 100 percent pay increases.