UPDATE 1-Zambia to resume issuing new mining licences

Thu Feb 4, 2016 9:50am EST
 
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LUSAKA Feb 4 (Reuters) - Zambia has resumed issuing new mining licences, and granting renewal and transfer of rights which it had suspended in August last year, its mines minister said on Thursday.

Under the new rules, the government has increased the area of exploration for mining investors, raising the possibility of finding meaningful deposits and justifying larger capital investment, mines minister Christopher Yaluma said.

The new regulations had also increased the period of exploration to 10 years from a renewable period of two years, giving investors ample time to search for deposits, he said.

"In view of this development, I wish to declare the resumption of the issuance, renewal and transfer of mining rights and non-mining rights with effect from Monday," Yaluma told a media briefing in the capital Lusaka.

Yaluma said the new regulations would also encourage the development of local communities in areas surrounding the mining areas with anticipated larger capital investment. (Reporting by Chris Mfula; Editing by James Macharia)