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HomeMiningEmerald watchers extol Pridegems for openness

Emerald watchers extol Pridegems for openness

By JOHN CHOLA

The Emerald Production Watch of Zambia (EPWZ) has commended Pridegems Mining Limited for transparency in its production, processing and auctioning of the precious stone.

EPWZ says Pridegems, a sister company of Grizzly Mining Limited, kept an open door policy at almost every level of business, which had made it possible for benefits to spread across various beneficiaries through taxes paid to the treasury.

Musa Kafimbwa, EPWZ President, who was speaking after Pridegems concluded its 2023 emerald auction sale held December 5 to 9 in Kitwe, said the company’s transparency policy had made it possible for stakeholders to trade with it and benefit through the supply chain.

Kafimbwa noted that in most instances emerald auctioning was held secretly and under tight security, but Grizzly Mining had ensured that concerned stakeholders and the authorities were ever present to promote transparency and accountability of the transactions.

“Firstly Grizzly Mining Limited and its sister companies such as Pridegems Mining Limited are wholly owned by Africans including Zambians who are also the majority across the companies’ operations. For some time now Pridegems has continued holding its emeralds auction sales within the country, a move that has also brought about multiplying effects such as benefits to the hospitality and transport sectors whenever foreign buyers troop to Copperbelt for the auction,” said Kafimbwa.

Pridegems always invited EPWZ to the auction sales, alongside key stakeholders including the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) who ensured taxes on all sales were paid instantly to the government and immigration authorities.

“We as Emerald Production Watch of Zambia and several others are allowed freely to be part of the auction and witness every process. This is how it should be, there must be transparency in the manner we mine, process and sell our minerals to ensure that Zambians benefit from their mineral wealth. It’s a challenge to other mines to cut the secrecy and let Zambia earn adequately from its mineral wealth through transparent procedures,” Kafimbwa said.

The open manner of doing business promoted by Grizzly Mining Limited was a clear indication that the company meant well to Zambia and had nothing to hide.

Kafimbwa said due to Grizzly’s transparency on the profitability of emerald mining in Zambia, several prospecting investors had indicated an interest in investing in the sector soon.

Kafimbwa urged the government to continue cultivating an enabling environment through good policies to encourage Grizzly Mining and its sister company Pridegems to thrive and continue aiding Zambia’s economic development agenda

Pridegems General Manager Barbara Shilengwa Kafwilo said her organization prided itself in mining in Zambia not only for profit but also for doing open business and ploughing back into the community as a way of being a key player in the developmental agenda of the nation.

Kafwilo vowed her organization would continue being inclusive, transparent and accountable.

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