“We’re waiting on tender hooks to hear what will happen with the tax situation”
Interview with Lindsay Shankland, Managing Director of the Manitou Group, a returning exhibitor at the Copperbelt Mining Trade Expo & Conference (CBM-TEC) in Kitwe from 5-6 May.
1) How long has Manitou been doing business in Zambia?
We’ve been doing business there for the last 11, 12 years, particularly in the mining sector and a little in the agricultural sector. We also service quite a bit in the general industry, such as warehousing and transport. Our main areas of business there are in Kitwe and Indola, mining country.
2) What’s it like doing business in Zambia?
The people are very friendly and helpful. The roads in Zambia are not the best and our local clients therefore appreciate the service and support that we are able to provide in Zambia. We have a local partner there – it is very important to have that. It is really part of our success story there, to have that local presence.
3) Which products/services that your company provides to the mining industry are you currently most excited about?
In addition to our range of telescopics, rough terrain forklifts and skid steer-, track- and articulated loaders, we are currently excited about our MHT-X 14350 telehandler which was launched at the Electra Mining Africa show in September last year. This is currently the largest telehandler in the world and has a load capacity of 35 Tons. We also launched our Manitou Roofbolter, Manitou Scaler and ManiTrax tow tractor (with a capacity of 35 Tons). In addition to these, Manitou offers a diverse range of mining attachments such as tyre handlers, cable reel handlers, wheel motor handlers, cylinder handlers, to name a few.
4) What makes you competitive in this market?
Manitou is the market leader in rough terrain forklifts and telescopic handlers. We have a full dealership in Kitwe.
5) What in your view are the main challenges to the mining industry on the Copperbelt?
The world price of copper, and the stability in the copper mining industry. The growth of the sector depends on it. Also, currently there is great concern about the increase in mining taxes. It is causing quite a stir in the sector and could impact suppliers if some of the mines close as they are threatening to do. We’re waiting on tender hooks to hear what will happen with the tax situation.
6) What is your vision for this sector?
To grow our market share and offer the best service and support.
7) Why did you decide to partner with Copperbelt Mining Trade Expo & Conference?
To continue to expose the Manitou name and product to the Zambian market. It helps brand awareness, letting people know that you are there. You do expect longterm sales at such events, but it is important to promote your brand locally. We’ve met a couple of people that may mean new prospective sales and also a few farmers who were at the event last year.
8) What will be your message at the event this year?
The exposure of the versatility of Manitou equipment.