Business News

Business News (82)

 

By John Chola

French oil marketer Rubis Energie has commenced operations in Zambia with an initial plan to invest US$40 million in the economy for the next three to four years.

In Zambia the French oil marketing giant is trading under the RUBiS Energy Zambia brand after acquiring KenolKobil originally from Kenya.
On Tuesday, RUBiS officially launched its rebranded former Kobil service station in Ibex Hill.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) RUBiS Group, Jean-Christian Bergeron, has told Solwezi Today on the side-lines of the launch that the event signifies the beginning of rebranding and modernization of former Kobil sites as well as acquisition of new ones.

“KenolKobil, a company listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) attracted a public offer sale and we bought it for US$350 million. In Zambia we are investing US$5 million to US$10 million per year, to rebrand, to modernize and also sometimes to acquire new sites. It’s a constant investment for the next three to four years,” Bergeron explains.

In his address at the launch, Bergeron said the Paris Stock Exchange listed firm currently has operations in 40 countries in the world.

He said RUBiS Energy Zambia has been fully committed to Zambia as can be seen from its takeover of the national brand KenolKobil and Sam Fuel, which had a presence on the Copperbelt.

“Zambia is an important market for us as it has huge potential and our vision is to become the official brand of customers on the move. We will provide quality products and services with convenience, efficiency with care for the environment,” Bergeron said.

Speaking at the same event, RUBiS Energy Zambia General Manager Vincent Fleury said his company will establish in every corner of Zambia to provide quality services.

“There was no better time to have this launch than now. Despite the negative impact of COVID-19 pandemic there is hope for the Zambian economy to bounce back stronger. For us, RUBiS Energy is unleashing new frontiers and creating new opportunities for Zambians to succeed,” Fleury said.

Fleury added that in Zambia, RUBiS Energy has so far rolled out 40 service stations across the country.

“This is a brand for Zambians and through them we commit to offering efficiency, excellency and above all consumer confidence to our new and already existing clientele. To further develop our accessibility, it’s our intent to expand our footprint and to invest heavily in the market,” Fleury added.

He assured the customers that the launch was the first step in the company’s pipeline of activities aimed at meeting their needs for mobility with high quality fuel and lubricants with the akg LPG brand through all service stations.

In addition, RUBiS is already innovating concepts aimed at satisfying the needs and desires of customers with convenient store brands—RUBiS Express, quick service restaurants, service bays and ATMs to make customers to feel at home while at RUBiS.

Government has hailed the RUBiS Energy investment in the country as the gesture will create job opportunities for citizens.

Director of Petroleum in the Ministry of Energy, Mandona Luhila–Muyovwe, commended Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) for approving the acquisition of KenolKobil as the gesture recognized that the organization had the interest of Zambians at heart.

She said her ministry would continue promoting investments such as RUBiS Energy that promote employment opportunities and add great value to the country’s economy.

Source: LT《》RT

 

Zambia said a lack of capital halted production at a copper mine it seized from Indian billionaire Anil Agarwal’s Vedanta Resources Ltd., just as the metal surges towards a record.

The standstill at Konkola Deep, a high-grade underground pit that also contains cobalt, was triggered by a shortage of funds to develop new mining areas, said Barnaby Mulenga, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Mines. The lack of capital is also curbing output at other operations of Konkola Copper Mines Plc, which was placed under provisional liquidation in 2019 after the government alleged Vedanta lied about expansion plans and paid too little tax.

The production setbacks at KCM come as copper surged back above $10,000 a ton on Thursday, with the reopening of major industrial economies sparking a commodities rally. Africa’s No. 2 copper producer is reliant on exports of the metal, but production at Konkola Deep may only resume after the resolution of a legal arbitration with Vedanta opens the way for new investment, Mulenga said.

“This demand for copper will only get higher and the sooner these issues are resolved there is still an opportunity to exploit this resource,” Mulenga said. “This is a giant which is sleeping and we remain positive that it will be mined at some point.”

Mulenga said KCM’s current challenges result from Vedanta failing to complete underground works that would have allowed more ore to be extracted from Konkola Deep. The flagship mine in Zambia’s Copperbelt requires most of the $1.2 billion needed to turn KCM around, he said.

Vedanta, which has denied the government’s allegations, said it was “saddened” to hear about the production halt at Konkola Deep. The company said it had invested more than $1.7 billion in KCM and had planned to spend a further $1.5 billion to make the operations profitable.

Last month, employees of more than 30 contractors at KCM stopped work and staged protests over workers’ grievances.

The mounting problems at KCM highlight the political risks as President Edgar Lungu’s government seeks a greater share of mining revenues ahead of elections this year. While Zambia’s copper production rose to a record last year, that didn’t prevent the nation from defaulting on its external debt.

Zambia also plans to sell a majority stake in Mopani Copper Mines Plc after acquiring the operations from Glencore Plc, Mulenga said earlier this year. The government wants to raise about $300 million to expand output and pay off the $1.5 billion it owes the commodities giant.

Source: Bloomberg《》RT

 

By Hector Simfukwe

Minister of Water Development Raphael Nakachinda says government has heavily invested in the provision of Water and Sanitation services to the people in all parts of the country.

Nakachinda says the investment will make it easy for the country to ensure that all the citizens have access to clean drinking water.

He says the construction and expansion of water treatment plants in provinces like Lusaka, Western and Northern is testimony of government's commitment to improving people’s access to clean drinking water .

The Minister told ZNBC that President Lungu wants citizens including those in rural areas to have access to sanitation services.

He said government will continue empowering water utility firms so that they can improve on their service delivery.

Source: ZNBC《》RT

 

Zambia’s Ministry of Agriculture and the Brazilian Fertilizer Company Agronelli has held talks aimed at commencing the fertilizer partnership between Zambia and Brazil.

Speaking when she addressed stakeholders during a virtual meeting, Zambia’s Ambassador to Brazil Alfreda Mwamba called on Agronelli to consider possibilities of partnering with the Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia (NCZ) through technology advancement and production of phosphate fertilizer.

Ambassador Mwamba said that Agronelli’s fertilizer would enable Zambia to produce the drought- resistant bumper harvest as well as benefit the small scale and commercial farmers in the country.

“Once the centre is set up in Zambia, exports could be made within the region and economic benefits will be attained in line with the National Agricultural Policy,” she noted.

Dr. Mwamba added that the partnership will further contribute to the increase and availability of inputs on the market as well as boost crop production and diversification.

She reiterated that the phosphate fertilizer from Brazil will enhance government’s efforts of sustaining the country’s food basket.

And Agronelli Company Director Renato Costa notified the stakeholders that the Brazilian fertilizer company is ready to send a one-ton foot container of fertilizer to Zambia as a pilot project to ascertain its results on the Zambian soil.

Mr. Costa said his company is ready to do business with Zambia because of the country’s vibrant Agro vision.

Speaking on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture, Principal Agricultural Economist, Peter Zulu advised Agronelli to send the sample of the fertilizer to Zambia for evaluation before importation.

Zulu assured the Brazilian company that Zambia is open to meaningful investment in order to develop the Agricultural sector.

Other Stakeholders that participated in the meeting include the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Zambia Agricultural Research Institute and the Zambia Development Agency.

This is contained in a statement issued to the media on Friday by First Secretary for Press and Public Relations at the Zambian Embassy in Brazil, Grace Makowane.

Source: LT《》RT

 

By Kalonde Nyati,
Lusaka

Zambia's Copper prices on Monday rose, eyeing their highest level in nearly 10 years, as a weakening dollar and supply concerns in top producer Chile boosted prices.

The red metal, which is Zambia’s main source of export revenue, traded as high as US$9,617 a tonne on the London Metal Exchange (LME).

Any rise in the commodity impacts positively on Zambia as it results in improved United States dollar inflows and improved economic activity.

“Three-month copper on the LME rose as much as 0.6 percentage point to US$9,610 a tonne."

Source: ZDM《》RT

 

To reduce interest rates and promote financial inclusion, Government plans to recapitalise Zambian-owned banks and non-financial institutions.

President Edgar Lungu said Government intends to devise various interventions aimed at reducing interest rates to increase consumer spending and investment in the country.

The President said this on Wednesday when he launched the Patriotic Front (PF) manifesto for 2021-2026.

“Some of the 2021 implementation plans include recapitalising Zambian-owned banks and non-bank financial institutions to enhance financial inclusion and reduce interest rates,” the head of Sate said.

Source: ZDM《》RT

 

By Brian Mwale

The Zambian Government in the first quarter of this year recorded a 13-percent rise in budgetary revenue collection.

Secretary to the Treasury Fredson Yamba says government collected 18 point 5 billion kwacha from January to March which is 13 percent above the targeted 16 point 3 billion kwacha.

Yamba says the over performance was mainly driven by Pay As You Earn -PAYE- tax arrears, upward amendments of provisional returns and advance payments by both mining and non-mining firms.

He says the projected revenue had 13 point 4 billion kwacha set to come from taxes and the rest from non-tax revenue and grants.

Yamba has however stated that government’s expenditure in the same period was 23-percent below the projected 28 point 6 billion kwacha after spending only 22-billion kwacha.

He adds that Zambia’s fiscal deficit remains high, further noting the need to continue formulating revenue policies that will enhance revenue collections while promoting the country’s development agenda.

And, Yamba has revealed that the Ministry of Finance has started preparations for the 2022 National Budget and 2022-2024 Medium Term Budget Framework.

He has since called on the public, private sector players and non-state actors to submit proposals on tax and non-tax policies for possible inclusion in next year’s budget.

Yamba was speaking during a press briefing in Lusaka on Friday.

Source: ZNBC《》 RT

President Edgar Lungu has empowered more than 50 cooperatives in Lusangazi District of Eastern Province with various materials to boost their capital.

The Edgar Chagwa Lungu Multipurpose Empowerment Cooperative today distributed poultry requisites, bales of second hand clothes, sewing machines, block making machines, roofing sheets and cement.

This is in addition to assorted groceries for shop businesses and farming inputs among others.

ECL Multipurpose Empowerment Cooperative delegation leader Fuli Msimuko said the Presidential empowerment was aimed at improving the lives of the vulnerable people in the country.

ZANIS reports that Msimuko said the team was Lusangazi to respond to deliver the empowerment that various cooperatives in the area had applied for under the ECL multipurpose empowerment cooperative.

Msimuko disclosed that the delegation was on the ground to counter check information on the cooperatives that had applied for the empowerment.

“The President has sent us to come and verify what you sent to Lusaka on the cooperatives that would benefit from the ECL empowerment so that we give you the things you had applied for,” he said.

Msimuko added that President Lungu wants everyone to benefit from the empowerment and better their lives and urged the beneficiaries to put the empowerment into good use.

And ECL empowerment member, Barringtone Zulu said the delegation has given chance to the beneficiaries to select what kind of empowerment they want if they were not satisfied with what they had earlier applied for.

“Our coming here is also to give chance to the applicants of the ECL empowerment to select what businesses they feel comfortable to venture in if they were not satisfied with what they had earlier applied for,” he said.

And Lusangazi District Commissioner, Goodwin Sekelani Phiri said President Lungu has a heart for all Zambians and that was why he has empowered in the area.

“The President loves everyone and that is why he is giving you the empowerment so that it sustains your lives,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sharon Zulu from Mutu Women’s Club thanked President Lungu for empowering them with farming inputs saying this would better the lives of many people as the group members would now be able to generate their own income and support their families.

Another beneficiary, Vaida Phiri from Sipalingana Women’s Club, also expressed gratitude to the head of state for empowering her group with capital for poultry business, saying the empowerment will benefit group members and also meet the needs of their families.

“The President has done a good thing and I thank him for the empowerment as it will sustain our lives by meeting so many needs that we have,” she said.

Source: LT《》RT

 

By Katwishi Bwalya

President Edgar Lungu has directed the Ministry of energy to immediately implement the 50 percent transportation of fuel allocated to Zambian drivers without delay.

President Lungu says the 50 percent allocation should be complied with without delay.

Transport Minister, Mutotwe Kafwaya says President Lungu has also directed that the delivery of fuel to various destinations should immediately start.

The directive follows a report submitted to President Lungu by Kafwaya who was tasked to get to the ground on what led to sit in Protest by Zambian fuel Tanker Drivers.

Kafwaya has told journalists at a media briefing this afternoon that President Lungu has also directed his ministry and the Ministry of foreign Affairs and Energy to inquire into the treatment of Zambian drivers both in Zambia and at various ports outsi
e the country.

And Kafwaya has assured the Tanker Drivers that the Presidential directive will be implemented without fail.

He has since urged the Tanker drivers to start offloading fuel now that their grievances have been resolved by President Lungu.

Source: ZNBC《》RT

 

By Mark Ziligone

The Zambian Government has started the exploration process of oil and gas in different parts of the country.

Mines and Mineral Resources Minister Richard Musukwa says government is in a hurry to discover the oil and gas for the country’s economic development.

Musukwa says his Ministry has engaged various stakeholders and expertise to ensure that process is concluded soon.

He told Journalists at a media briefing in Lusaka on Friday that Government is learning the challenges that other oil producing countries face in order to apply the best practices.

Musukwa also urged Zambians to be patient as Government is working closely with license holders in a bid to harness the research.

Source: ZNBC《》RT

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