Zambia’s government will cut mineral royalties for underground mines to 6 percent, lower than the 9 percent expected to take effect on July 1, the presidency said on Friday.
“Mineral royalty tax will be reduced to 6 percent from the earlier proposed 9 percent. It will remain at 9 percent for open pit mines,” presidential spokesman Amos Chanda told Reuters.
The government of Africa’s second-biggest copper producer set the royalty tax rate for open cast and underground mining at 9 percent in April, rowing back from earlier plans to charge as much as 20 percent.
Zambia’s decision to increase royalties for open pit mines to 20 percent from 6 percent and those for underground mines to 8 percent from 6 percent in January met with an outcry from unions and producers, forcing the government to review the plan.
Some of the foreign running companies in Zambia include Glencore, Barrick Gold Corp, Vedanta Resources and Canada’s First Quantum Minerals.