Zambian mine refutes media report of closing operations

Indian mining giant, Vedanta Resources Plc, has denied media reports that it intends to close some of its operations in Zambia due to challenges brought about by falling copper prices, a senior official said on Thursday.


On Wednesday, some local media report that Konkola Copper Mines (KCM), a unit of the London-listed Indian mining firm, intends to place its Nchanga underground mine situated in the mining town of Nchanga on the Copperbelt Province on care and maintenance, a move that may see 2,503 contract workers lose their jobs.


But Shapi Shachinda, the company’s Public Relations and Communications Manager while acknowledging that the company was facing challenges as a result of low copper prices said it will not take any action to close some of its units until the company receives feedback from unions.

The official however acknowledged that the company is reviewing some of its loss-making assets but was quick to point out that the company was mindful of the impact of its decisions on the lives of people involved in its business and was seeking to preserve as many jobs as possible.

“The global copper mining industry is currently facing serious challenges due to low prices. As a result, KCM has to review its loss-making assets. The Nchanga underground operations are currently making substantial losses,” he said in a statement.

The company, he said, remains committed to its Zambian operations and that it had a strong reserve base and a world-class portfolio having invested 3 billion U.S. dollars in upgrading and expanding its facilities over the last decade.

The company, he added, has since held meetings with major unions representing workers and will only make its decision known after getting feedback from the unions. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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