Don’t kill goose that lays golden egg, Saasa urges Govt

Mon, 26 Dec 2016 11:33:45 +0000

 

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

 GOVERNMENT should not deep into the profit margins of investment at the expense of collecting revenue as it may kill the industries, says Professor Oliver Saasa

Prof Saasa said while Government should be in the forefront promoting investment it should avoid imposing high taxes as that would kill the industry.

He was commenting on the removal of the 7.5 percent duty on imported copper concentrates.

“I understand where the Zambia Chamber of Mines is coming from. Much as I appreciate the Government’s need for additional revenue, it should not be done at the expense of killing the goose that lays the golden egg,” he said.

Prof Saasa explained that much as he understood Government’s reasons for the tax proposal, it should not deep into the profit margin of those that ran smelters.

He explained that imposing such duty on the copper concentrates would have made it too expensive for mines running smelters to operate in Zambia.

Prof Saasa further explained that Government’s proposal was only going to be workable if Zambian companies produced sufficient concentrates.

“At the moment the output by mines has been slowing down, by this time we should have hit a million metric tonnes. We are still hovering between 7 and 800, because of that importation becomes attractive for those with smelters.

“You have seen investment in these huge plant smelters and those are not looking only at how much is produced in Zambia but also how much is produced in the neighbouring countries such as DRC,” he said.

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