Energy Minister David Mabumba says Mopani Copper Mines is losing $3 million per day since the stand-off with Copperbelt Energy Corporation over tariffs began on August 11.
Speaking to journalists after he met Mopani officials in Kitwe today, Mabumba also revealed that he had directed the mine and CEC to resolve their dispute by close of business today.
“Today’s meeting with Mopani was to resolve some of the outstanding issues regarding the 9.3 cents or the increase in the power tariff. So what we have concluded is that Mopani and CEC are going to engage in detailed negotiations today with the view that before the end of this week, they can provide CEC with an interim tariff structure subject to them engaging in arbitration or further negotiations. So what we have agreed with Mopani, to help them so that we can restore the power, is for them to agree with CEC, at what tariff structure are they willing to accept as an interim measure subject to them going into some arbitration or further negotiations,” said Mabumba.
“I wanted to conclude the negotiations today and I have told them to give me the answer before close of business today. As far as Mopani is concerned, they are losing about $3 million per day.”
Mopani has since sent home some of its workers since the restriction of power supply.
Meanwhile, seven mining firms have started paying revised electricity tariffs among them Konkola Copper Mines, Barrick, Kansanshi, Luanshya Mines and Chambeshi.