Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) has reaffirmed its commitment towards Zambia’s development agenda despite the current challenges it is facing that have affected its operations.
KCM chief executive officer Steven Din said the company’s investment in the mines amounting to US$3 billion over the last 11 years was a clear demonstration of its commitment to Zambia’s development agenda.
“Despite the current challenges KCM is facing such as low copper prices and power deficits, the company’s 50-year vision will ensure that KCM still remains in operation for a long time to come through enhanced sustainable operations of its mines,” he said.
Mr Din said to achieve such an agenda, KCM was examining local economic development opportunities aimed at building up the economic capacity of the communities around KCM’s operations to improve their economic future and the quality of life for all.
He also highlighted the company’s commitment to its corporate social responsibility programmes in the areas of community livelihoods such as education, health and sports.
Mr Din disclosed that KCM had spent more than US$160 million on its CSR projects since Vedanta acquired the company.
He said the company seeks to use the KCM assets as a catalyst to secure economic activity in the Copperbelt and surrounding areas for the next 50 years and beyond, long after KCM has ceased mining.
“KCM is working a 50-year vision but this vision depends on the Copperbelt realizing its potential as an economic hub. Mining alone will not achieve this.
‘‘Agriculture, tourism, logistics, services and trade will all need to make a contribution,” he said.
Mr Din was confident that with the right strategy, carefully executed in partnership with the Government, donors and civil society groups, KCM could add substantially to additional economic activity per year in non-mining sectors and create many jobs.
He said generating employment beyond the life of the mines would be the single greatest economic legacy of KCM in the Copperbelt.