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Zambia: Mining job cuts violate investor licences

13 November 2013, 14:58

Lusaka - Zambia said it viewed any moves by mining companies to cut their workforces without consulting the government as a violation of their investment licences.

In a statement released Wednesday and targeted at mining companies that have found it increasingly necessary to get rid of workers, the government put out a statement of intent after increased complaints from laid off workers.

"It has been observed that some investors in some mining companies have found it necessary to down size their workforce each time they are faced with operational challenges," the government of Africa's top copper producer said in a statement.

It added: "Government views such actions as a violation of, and not within the spirit of the investment licence."

The government added that it was "unwarranted, unfortunate and unacceptable" for mining companies to cut jobs before consulting the government and other stakeholders.

The statement comes days after Lusaka revoked the work permit of the chief executive of KCM following a row over job cuts.

The government last month threatened to shut Shoprite stores after the South African company fired workers who went on strike over pay. Shoprite, Africa's biggest retailer, subsequently backtracked on the sackings.

Mining companies in Zambia include First Quantum Mineral , Glencore International, Vale and China's Jinchuan.

- Reuters


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