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Saturday, 27 October 2007

The peasant girl with a rich lover, 2nd Edition

The Leader of the Opposition presented a paper at Harvard University this week on Chinese Investment in Africa and Implications for International Relations, Consolidation of Democracy and Respect for Human Rights: The Case of Zambia. Well worth the read for students of Zambia - China relations. Within the paper is this interesting observation on Zambia's apparent cold feet on reviewing the mineral agreements:

The Chinese acquired Chambishi Copper Mine and the Sinazeze Coal Mine. Due to corruption, the Chinese were given favorable terms, including generous tax exemptions for 15 years and even permission to export unprocessed ores to China. The tax exemptions had to be extended to the other mining companies that had acquired the other Copper mines, such as Glencore, First Quantum Minerals and Vendata Resources. Although the tax exemptions should have been reviewed in 2005, the Government grew cold feet, because of its close ties with the Chinese. As a result, the country and its people have not benefited from the recent high copper prices. The losses to the people of Zambia have been made worse by Government’s agreement to relieve the mining companies of responsibility for social services in the mining townships. As a result, most of the money from the exports of minerals is accruing to the mining companies, which tend to take out most of the money. Thus, Zambia has little to show for the high copper prices obtained over the last few years.
Update (27th October): On a related topic - Felix Mutati (Minister for Commerce) is worried about Chinese labourers.


  1. I don't want to sound too cynical, but is this what all the negative stories about Sata were about?

    Maybe this is what is needed to get the government to communicate with the public about these agreements.

  2. MrK,
    But its the same Sata and Chiluba who gave out and signed these 15 years bad contracts.Is their anything at hand that Sata wasn't party to the Chiluba era collective agreement? Could you show us what role the New Deal has in those bad contracts with the Chinese?.Do you find Sata to have any moral right to condemn what he endorsed after 9 years? Do you think he could be ranting like this had he been in plot one?

  3. That is the benefit of a criminal conspiracy - like the mining agreements - someone is always going to talk. :)

    I am still interested to know why all the negative publicity around Sata came out recently, when he was going to go public with the details about these agreements.

    If I didn't know better, it sounds like an attempt to discredit him.

    But who knows. I'm staying tuned. :)

  4. "Could you show us what role the New Deal has in those bad contracts with the Chinese?" - Anonymous

    MrK you are being asked by a very interested person! Notice Anonymous calls the government New Deal . That should give you the clue!

    So what is your answer?

  5. Anonymous,

    Do you find Sata to have any moral right to condemn what he endorsed after 9 years?

    But it is never too late to confess. :)

    What is the moral right to keep quiet about a criminal conspiracy?

    I'm sure you aren't arguing for the virtue of secrecy among thieves? :)

    And the New Deal MMD is of course the direct succcessor of the MMD of Chiluba.


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