By Obert Simwanza
THE Zambia Chamber of Mines is elated by the government’s decision to peg the mineral royalty tax at nine per cent from the proposed 20 per cent in the 2015 national budget.
The adjustment in the taxes is expected to end the long stand controversy between mining investors and the Zambian government.
On Monday, the Zambian government announced the reintroduction of the 30 per cent corporate income tax on mining operations as well as the nine per cent mineral royalty tax for open cast and underground mining.
“We welcome the Cabinet announcement on the changes to the 2015 tax regime. The announced changes follow cordial discussions between government and operators. Our members are looking forward to establish the impact of these changes in the financial business models of the business. It is only after the workings that we will form a position,” said Jackson Sikamo the chamber president.
During the announcement of the changes, acting government spokesperson Vincent Mwale said the tax revision would result in an estimated loss of K2.3 billion to the treasury although he was quick to point out that the ministry of Finance would seek the steps to address the shortfall.
The tax regimes come into effect on July 1 and Mwale was optimistic that the new measures would bring about stability and predictability to the economy.
“The approved mining taxation system would bring about the desired stability, predictability, consistency and transparency in the sector,” he said.
Copperbelt Mining and Trade Expo event director Nicole Smith says the decision by government on the revised tax regimes would continue to make Zambia a favourable investment destination.
Smith was speaking ahead of the expo scheduled for May5-6 in Kitwe.
“We remain convinced that Zambia is an attractive mining destination due to a healthy spirit of engagement between government and the operators,” said Smith.
The expo is expected to be attended by over 200 delegates and at least 1,500 people are expected to attend.
Zambia’s Minister of Mines Christopher Yaluma and his counterpart at Commerce Margaret Mwanakatwe are expected to represent government at the event.