SACCORD calls for quick solution to mine tax impasse

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The Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (SACCORD) says it has taken note of and is concerned about the impending impasse between the Zambian Government and the mining companies over the newly introduced sales tax regime.
In a statement issued to the media, SCCORD executive director Boniface Cheembe, said the impasse between Government and mining companies requires a genuine dialogue between the two stakeholders.
Cheembe explained that his organisation is of the view that Government and mining companies are stakeholders that are key to the citizens of the country as well as the economic well-being and development of the nation hence the need to resolve the impasse quickly.
“Therefore, this impasse in terms of making progress requires a genuine dialogue on the part of the two stakeholders. This genuine dialogue must be in the interest of the Government, citizens of the country, and the mining companies in terms of producing win-win outcomes.
“Zambia’s mining towns are poorly developed and there have been concerns that the ordinary citizens are getting a raw deal and that there seems to be a lack of transparency and accountability in the benefits of natural resources of citizens in the mining towns and generally the country as a whole. This has prompted the Government to introduce the Sales Tax as a way of recovering adequate revenue from the mining companies. If the issue is that there was inadequate consultation on the part of the Government with the mining companies, a dialogue process can be able to address this matter. What matters is that through this dialogue process a win-win solution is realized,” he said.
He said the country and the citizens are in desperate need to see development in most hence need to find a solution that benefits not only the companies but ensures that citizens get the best deal.
“The Government must create a conducive environment for business and the citizens must be able to benefit from the proceeds of the business. SACCORD therefore appeals to the Government to consider sitting on the table with the mining companies for a win-win solution so that we increase on transparency and accountability in the natural resources of the country for the benefit of the people.
“Furthermore, the dialogue will assist in allaying on the part of the employees that they may either have jobs or not which is a source of psychological trauma and ultimately conflict,” he said.
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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31