Despite the challenges in Zambia, Barrick Gold Corporation remains committed to finding a sustainable solution to ensure the sustainability of its Lumwana copper mine.
Barrick said in a media release that it is continuing to engage with the Zambian government and community stakeholders about a mutually-beneficial way forward for the operation.
Subsequent to the first Lumwana board meeting following the Barrick/Randgold merger, Barrick’s COO for Africa and the Middle East, Willem Jacobs, said the company was mindful that the Government was under pressure to increase its revenue. At the same time, however, its proposed tax changes would put Lumwana in a challenging situation.
“The proposed changes to taxes and royalties would imperil the mine’s ability to sustain returns to all stakeholders, such as the significant contribution of more than US$3.3 billion it has already made to the Zambian economy over the past 10 years,” Jacobs says.
“Lumwana has made detailed proposals to the government about a partnership approach which would provide Zambia with an improved share in the economics of Lumwana without overburdening the mine. Finding a win-win solution between the industry and government would without doubt increase investor confidence in Zambia and safeguard the long-term prospects of its mining industry.”
Jacobs says media reports that Barrick had sold Lumwana were untrue, but given the challenging conditions the mine was facing, all options would have to be considered.