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Zambia indebted to major mining companies to the tune of US $215m in tax refunds

Zambia owes major mining companies US $215m in tax refunds as at June 30, 2019.  Zambia’s Finance Minister Bwalya Ng’andu made the announcement last week, following the long-running dispute with the miners.

In December 2018, the Zambian government reportedly withheld payment, justifying their actions with lack of what they termed correct documentation. The government has since verified that it owed the companies US $215m in Value Added Tax (VAT) refunds. On the other hand, however, mining firms are claiming an additional US $374m. This, according to the Finance Minister, is unfounded as the firms are yet to provide evidence supporting their claim.

Ng’andu was responding to a query in parliament on the unpaid tax refunds to local mining firms’ majority owned by Glencore, Vedanta Resources, First Quantum Minerals and Barrick Gold. Ng’andu said the government planned to meet the affected mining companies and agree how the outstanding refunds would be paid.

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