GOVERNMENT SECURES 49% EQUITY PARTNERSHIP IN MOPANI, $1.1BN INVESTMENT
Government secures 49 percent equity partnership in Mopani, $1.1 Billion investment
President Hakainde Hichilema confirmed yesterday that Government has entered a substantial agreement with International Resources Holding (IRH) injecting a substantial $1.1 billion into Zambia’s mining sector.
During the End of Year Press Conference at Mulungushi Conference Center in Lusaka, President Hichilema revealed that IRH is set to be a Strategic Equity Partner in Mopani Copper Mines (MCM), investing $620 million as new equity capital, acquiring a 51% stake in MCM.
“We have closed the Mopani deal,” President Hichilema declared.
The detailed transaction includes a $400 million Shareholder Loan to settle existing debts, with the Zambian Government retaining a 49% stake.
The aim is to fortify MCM’s financial position, support capital projects, and enhance operational efficiency.
IRH has additionally committed up to $220 million in interim funding, marking a substantial effort to strengthen Zambia’s mining sector.
“We are not going to be observers in the mining sector; we are taking substance now,” President Hichilema emphasized.
President Hichilema, underlining the government’s proactive stance, outlined efforts to achieve the ambitious target of 3 million tons of copper.
He stated, “We don’t want to merely achieve three million tons; we aspire to add value locally. We are committed to processing our mineral resources within our borders.”
This pivotal development aligns with President Hichilema’s vision to increase Zambian participation in the mining industry.
The head of State’s concrete actions towards achieving his vision include bringing Mopani Copper Mines and Konkola Copper Mines to full operation.
He also disclosed that Shaft 28 in Luanshya, dormant for over 28 years, is set to become operational, thanks to investments obtained during President Hichilema’s trips to China.
Over 3000 citizens in Luanshya are poised for employment opportunities due to this development, with a staggering $1.5 billion invested in Shaft 28.
Moreover, President Hichilema disclosed plans to incorporate technology, including artificial intelligence, for mineral exploration.
He said a dedicated company has been engaged for this purpose, with the aim of positioning Zambia as a major player in the global mining arena.
“This shortly will be the largest copper mines in the world (due to) technology and partnerships,” President Hichilema declared.