ZAMBIA is this week set to host an Alternative Mining Indaba aimed at enhancing the contribution of the mining and other extractive sectors to sustainable development and poverty reduction.
In a statement released yesterday, Southern Africa Resource Watch (SARW) country coordinator Edward Lange said the Indaba dubbed 'Zambia Alternative Mining Indaba (ZAMI)' would provide a platform for participants to review last year's ZAMI communique, share and learn about the experiences and developments and what should be done for Zambians to begin to see tangible benefits from the mineral resources the country was endowed with.
Lange said the conference would also promote ways of integrating the mineral sector with other sectors of the economy so as to optimise contributions of the mineral sector for sustainable development. "ZAMI has so far brought attention of the Zambian International Mining and Energy Conference (ZIMEC), which is a government sponsored event which attracts the interest and attendance of key decision makers from both public and private sectors. ZIMEC has just revealed just how little indigenous Zambians have benefited from investments in mining and energy sector.
In addition, ways were explained in which Zambia's natural resources can contribute to development and accelerate poverty reduction efforts through increased revenues from the extractive sector by way of taxes, royalties, signature bonuses and other payments. ZAMI is a major advocacy event that would help promote equity, transparency and accountability in the extractive sector," Lange said.
He said this year, ZAMI would be held on the Copperbelt in Ndola with participants of the conference from the southern and central Africa region.
Lange said the participants coming from outside Zambia would add value by offering a comparative analysis of extractive industries in their respective countries.
He said participants coming from Zambia would be members from civil society as well as representatives from international Non Government Organisation (NGOs) operating in Zambia.