Tuesday, November 11, 2008

No copper-bottomed capitalist market

the phrase copper-bottomed began to be used figuratively to refer to anything that was reliable and trustworthy . Well ,that certainly doesn't apply to the capitalist economics of the copper industry in Zambia .

Copper accounts for 80 percent of Zambia's foreign earnings but now the fall in international copper prices is causing unease in Zambia.

"...the pricing is not as profitable as we would like it to be..." general manager of the Zambia Chamber of Mines, told IRIN

"We are foreseeing a situation where our mining companies may begin to cut down on further investment programmes because of [making] less money and, ultimately, this may not just affect their profits but even their employment base," Bob Sichinga, an economist and former MP who served on Zambia's parliamentary mining committee.

"Because of the reduced resource base, government will face problems in social investments for such critical sectors as education and health," Saasa , a consultant economics professor at the University of Zambia ,said.

The prices of key commodities have rocketed over the last three years in Zambia: a 25kg bag of maize-meal now sells for $18.00, up from $11.00 in 2006; a litre of petrol (gasoline) has risen US 75 cents over the same period.

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