BY JOHN CHOLA
Grizzly Mining Group has opened a new addition mine in Lufwanyama which has initially created more than 500 jobs.
Group General Manager Carolyn Sampa said the new mine is operating under Pridegems, the gemstones arm of Grizzly Mining Group.
Sampa said in an interview that since the government of President Hakainde Hichilema has prioritized improving the standard of living for the local Zambians, Grizzly would double the effort to create more jobs for Zambians.
“We just opened a new mine under Pridegems and created initially more than 500 new jobs. Going by the statistics of Zambia as a country, one employee caters for at least six family members. By extrapolation we are actually looking after the wellbeing of more than 3000 people in Lufwanyama by the creation of this new mine.”
Speaking at the sidelines of Grizzly Mining gemstone auction sale held recently in Kitwe, Sampa said because of the prevailing good investment environment in Zambia, her organization’s copper mining project in Kasempa had also advanced and will soon be commissioned.
“We are also thankful to Government for creating an enabling environment in which to conduct our business. We appreciate the gesture by Government to create special incentives for mining machinery which always makes the expansion programmes much easier. With those incentives we are able to be liquid buy new machinery to expand our operations,” Sampa added.
Grizzly Group Chief Executive Officer Abdul Ba also hailed government for making the mining industry conducive and participatory for both foreign and local investors.
Ba notes that for instance the K167.3 billion 2023 National Budget had contained some good policies and pronouncements that were encouraging to the mining industry including the gemstones sector.
“A number of companies are coming back to start operations because the new policies are favourable for the industry to thrive,” Ba noted.
Ba said Grizzly Group was speeding up its diversification programme from largely gemstones into copper mining as the environment had become conducive.
“The spirit is to have an indigenous African company that can compete with other international mining giants. We have to show that Africans are able to operate at large scale given the impetus and environment,” Ba said.