Sat, 17 Feb 2018 13:43:27 +0000
By KELVIN SIABANA
FINNISH Ambassador to Zambia Timo Olkkonen has hailed Konkola Copper Mines (KCM)’s plan to expand its operations and increase production to 500,000 metric tons per annum.
Mr. Olkkonen said the plan was not only good for KCM but also a cause for optimism for Zambia’s mining sector.
He made the remarks this week on his recent tour of KCM operations alongside a delegation from Finnish mining companies.
“It’s been a very interesting and valuable visit. KCM’s plan to invest more and expand operations is definitely a cause for optimism for the mining industry and Zambia as a whole. I can see that KCM clearly has a bright future in Zambia,” Mr. Olkkonen said.
He also commended KCM for investing in clean technology at the smelter as this was environmental friendly.
“The Nchanga smelter speaks for itself. It’s one of the cleanest in the world and I think it’s good for KCM and other mining companies to use efficient and clean technology in their operations,” he said.
The smelter uses Finnish technology and captures 99.7 percent of sulphur dioxide, making it one of the best processing plants.
And KCM chief executive officer Steven Din said the company had planned to increase production and reach the target of 500,000 metric tons annually.
“Reaching the target of 500,000 (metric) tons will not only be beneficial to KCM but will also help Zambia to regain its position as a top copper producer in Africa, which was lost to the Democratic Republic of Congo,” Mr. Din said.
The Finnish delegation is touring mining companies in Zambia and the mission includes Geological Survey of Finland, Robit, A- insinoorit, Business Finland, Ima Engineering, Sleipner and Normet.
The delegation is in Zambia to explore business opportunities and strengthen existing business relationships with firms like KCM, which has procured considerable technology and equipment from Finland.