First Quantum keen to grow local businesses

First Quantum Minerals (FQM) has spent over US$7 billion on local procurement and provided opportunities for growth of Zambian businesses.

“Kansanshi Mining Plc spent US$7.8 billion on procurement within Zambia from 2010 to 2015, which translates into 88 percent of the company’s total operational expenditure,” Trident Foundation manager Garth Lappeman said in a statement.

Of the US$7.8 billion spent during the period under review, US$347 million, representing four percent of the total operational expense, was in business successfully conducted in North-Western Province alone.

Mr Lappeman said the company is committed in identifying opportunities for Zambian businesses to achieve its goal of migrating external procurement to local engagement.

FQM, which owns Kansanshi Mine in Solwezi and the US$2 billion Sentinel Mine in Kalumbila in North-Western Province, is still investing in various capacity-building programmes to empower Zambian companies and creating more jobs.

He said the planned Kalumbila multi-facility economic zone has to date attracted 68 investors with a current combined total investment value of over US$104 million and potential of 1,698 jobs anticipated.

“…Our goal is to migrate as much external procurement as possible to Zambia, and building capacity of SMEs is a key component to succeeding in this area,” Mr Lappeman said.

He said Kansanshi Mining has been consistent in making purchase enquiries, forward purchase agreements (FPAs) enquiries, and service and construction enquiries through the North-Western Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

“Local procurement systems and procedures are being developed for Sentinel Mine as Kalumbila Minerals Limited moves into steady-state operations,” he said.

In terms of capacity-building, Mr Lappeman said from 2010 to 2015, a total of 47 intensive five-day courses were sponsored by the company with an attendance of 1,236 people.

The courses focused on estimating and tendering, reading and interpreting construction drawings, planning and organising a construction project, concrete technology and quality control.

During the same period, a further 375 one-day courses were arranged by Kansanshi Mining Plc and attended by a total of 14,645 people.


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