When President Hakainde Hichilema swore in Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane at State House last week. One of the Key Performance Indicators given to the Minister of Finance was to triple the production of copper as one of the ways of Reviving the Crumbling economy.
According to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal Number 7 focuses on Affordable and Clean Energy. It goes on to state that Energy is central to nearly every major challenge and opportunity.
The world is making progress towards Goal 7, with encouraging signs that energy is becoming more sustainable and widely available. Access to electricity in poorer countries has begun to accelerate, energy efficiency continues to improve, and renewable energy is making impressive gains in the electricity sector.
Nevertheless, more focused attention is needed to improve access to clean and safe cooking fuels and technologies for 3 billion people, to expand the use of renewable energy beyond the electricity sector, and to increase electrification in sub-Saharan Africa.
Based on the focus of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It is clear to see that the World is on the move towards Clean Energy and Electrification. The centre of this move are to key minerals which are present in Zambia and that is Copper and Cobalt.
Copper and Cobalt account for major foreign exchange earners for Zambia and the government is positioning herself as the major supplier of the minerals to countries that are in the haste to development renewable and clean sources of Energy. Rural electrification and electric cars have been cited as the possible solutions to the challenge of deforestation which is greatly contributing to the problems of Climate Change.
Looking at the move to Clean Source of Energy and Copper and Cobalt being the minerals that are targeted as raw materials for the initiative. This has the potential to triple the prices of the minerals on the global market. This can easily improve the economic outlook of Copper Producing countries globally.
Zambia’s copper production currently stands at 800 000 annually. This is however, likely to change as the government is projecting a higher production. The production of Copper in Zambia is not just about exporting raw copper but value addition is going to be key as processed Copper should the main focus in the tripling process of production. The move is also a way of enticing would be investors to consider investing in the Zambian mining sector. The increased demand of the commodity can lead to the increased investment in the sector. This is the economic factor that the government is trying to cash in on by providing an enabling business environment that would increase investor confidence and potential for growth in the mining sector.
It is therefore, possible that the country can triple the production of Copper from the current 800 000 tonnes annually to 3 Million Tonnes Annually because of the increased demand of the commodity on the global market.
Zambia’s natural resources about to bring the much needed development to the country if the government provides a good business environment for both local and international investors