The Centre for Trade Policy and Development (CTPD) has urged Government to reinstate the clause on mineral revenue sharing mechanism (MRSM) in the Mines and Minerals Act to realise the aspirations of the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP).
CTPD acting executive director Isaac Mwaipopo said the 7NDP seeks to improve the quality of Zambian life as proposed in key continental initiatives such as the Africa Mining Vision (AMV).
Mr. Mwaipopo said amendment of 2015 Mines and Minerals Development Act will help Government and local communities benefit from the country’s natural resources.
The Mines and Minerals Act of 2015 provides for the revising of the law relating to the exploration for, mining and processing of minerals; provide for safety, health and environmental protection in mining operations.
And also to provide for the establishment of the Mining Appeals Tribunal; repeal and replace the Mines and Minerals Development Act, 2008; and provide for matters connected with, or incidental to, the foregoing.
“It is discouraging to note that at the mention of mining in Zambia, the focus and conversation among policy makers is narrowed down on how to create an enabling environment for investors with little or no attention paid to how communities that host mining investments can benefit from the country’s mineral wealth and live in a conducive environment.
“Too often, these communities are displaced and their sources of livelihoods destroyed by mining operations and left with no alternative sources of income,” he said in a statement recently.
Mr. Mwaipopo said the absence of clear policies and systems to curb mining companies’ practice of declaring the bulk of their investments as debt and not equity is eroding the country’s tax base.
He said the purpose of such measures is to minimise taxes payable by mining companies to Government.