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KCM denies exporting cobalt illegally, says GRZ is fully aware of its exports

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Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) says the Zambian government is fully aware of KCM’s production and export levels, contrary to reports that it has been illegally exporting US$20 million worth of cobalt every month.

And KCM has informed its shareholders that the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) has lifted the power restrictions imposed on the mining company, following “fruitful discussions.”

Reacting to an article on “alleged cobalt scam” reported in the Zambia Daily Mail of September 4, 2018, the mining company categorically denies the allegations contained therein, describing them as unfounded and mischievous.

“Even a cursory review of the company’s website indicates that cobalt is an important by-product at KCM, and the company has appealed to the Daily Mail to correct this misleading article in the interests of responsible journalism and the public interest,” reads a KCM statement to Zambian Eye.

“KCM is fully compliant with both mining and treasury regulations in Zambia. Tianjin Maolian Science and Technology Company is an established and long-term customer of KCM. It is therefore entirely correct that this product should be found on that company’s premises.”

KCM says Government of the Republic of Zambia is fully aware of KCM’s production and export levels as detailed in its returns to government and payment of the relevant taxes, explaining “It should be further noted that the ZCCM-IH holds a 20% interest in the company (The Company’s majority shareholder is the Industrial Development Corporation Ltd (IDC), an investment company wholly owned by the Zambian Government and the rest of the shareholders include institutions and private shareholders spread across the world), and 50% of KCM directors are independent directors. Directors of the company have full and unfettered access to production and financial information.”

And in another statement, KCM says it has resolved its power dispute with the Copperbelt Energy Corporation.

“Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) informs stakeholders that it has held fruitful discussions with the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC), which have culminated in the lifting of the power restriction imposed on Thursday, 30th August, 2018 over payments.

“Power was restored to the affected units, the Nchanga smelter and concentrators, on Monday night, which are now returning to normal operations and ramping up production.”

The mining company says it is fully focusing on achieving its production target of 400+ tonnes per day in a safe manner in spite of the setbacks experienced in the past few days, adding that measures have been put in place to ensure the operations teams catch up with lost production.

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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31