Zambia has seen an increase in revenue from the mining industry following the introduction of new tax rates which came into effect in 2011, a mining think-tank said on Tuesday.
In 2008, the Zambian government introduced a new tax regime aimed at increasing earnings from the sector by increasing company tax from 25 percent to 30 percent, mineral royalty was increased from 0.6 percent to three percent and later to six percent in 2011. The government further introduced a variable profit tax.
The Zambia Extractive Industries Initiative Council, which monitors revenue in the mining sector, said following the introduction of new tax regime, there has been an increase in revenue from the sector which nearly doubled to 1, 360 million United States dollars in 2011 compared to the 2010 revenue.
In a statement emailed to Xinhua, the think-tank, which launched its 2011 Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) report on Monday, said the increase represents over 30 percent contribution to government revenue by the mining sector.
"The increase is explained by a 165 percent increase in revenue collected from corporate tax following the end of tax breaks. Until 2010, mining companies continued paying taxes at the old rate pending clarification on the changes to the fiscal regime," the statement said.
"This was because the development agreements that the mining companies had earlier signed with government had stability clauses. However, in 2011 mining companies were required to pay all arrears arising from the 2008 changes to mining tax regime," the statement added.
The revenue increase recorded in 2011 was also partly due to a seven percent increase in copper production and an increase in metal prices driven by demand from Asia, especially China, the statement added.
Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development Christopher Yaluma, who launched the report, said his government was committed to implementing the EITI and urged stakeholders to address challenges raised in the report such as the failure by some government agencies to compile reliable mineral production figures and negative discrepancies in the report, among others.