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KCM back to full production

At work in the pit at
Konkola’s Nchanga mine
Lusaka, Zambia — MININGREVIEW.COM — 16 July 2008 – In Zambia, Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) has resumed full production in its Nkana business unit, after shutting down some operations as a precaution following a labour protest earlier in the week.

In a statement issued here, a KCM spokesman said the unit’s operations – located about 350 km north of the Zambian capital – have now resumed and production is normal. He added that 12 workers had been fired as a result of the protest on Monday.

KCM – which is majority-owned by London-listed Vedanta Resources Plc – did not say what impact the one-day shutdown had on production. In fact it forecast on Monday that it would raise cathode copper output by two-thirds from 150 000 tonnes in the previous year to 250 000 tonnes in the 2008/2009 fiscal year.

Reuters reports that the labour protest was prompted by reports that union representatives had agreed to a deal that fell short of workers’ wage demands. Union officials are continuing to brief members on the details of a new collective bargaining agreement that was negotiated last week.