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NEW Government targets to increase Copper production from 800, 000 metric tonnes to two million tonnes per annum to create jobs and increase revenue for the state, Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane has said.

Dr Musokotwane said the new government would negotiate with all mining companies to ensure a conducive environment for business was created to increase production and revenue for the government.

He said during the Sunday Interview Programme on ZNBC that lack of compromise had led to many disputes in the mining sector which now must be resolved to make the sector profitable.

Dr Musokotwane said the mining sector would create much needed jobs for the youth once production was increased.

He said resolving differences at KCM and Mopani mines would be prioritised.

Dr Musokotwane said no investors would take interest in KCM if the ownership matters involving the mine were not resolved.

And Dr Musokotwane said Government would target to secure the International Monetary Fund (IMF) package before the end of the year.

Dr Musokotwane said talks with the IMF would continue and was confident that a deal would be sealed by end of November.

He said IMF have specific fundamentals that they expect countries to adopt.

Dr Musokotwane said the ministry would come up with a robust plan to ensure that the IMF programme succeeded.

“We hope to secure the package before the end of the year,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr Musokotwane said austerity measures would be applied to save funds to finance priority government programmes.

He said Government had an ambitious plan to offer free education and recruit more teachers, nurses and doctors.

Dr Musokotwane said the money to finance all these plans would come from savings realised out of austerity measures.

He said the new government would avoid wasteful expenditures as it would be spent prudently.

Dr Musokotwane said Government would increase bursaries so that they also cater for students in rural areas.

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