Mines and Minerals Development Minister Richard Musukwa says government is willing to listen to any progressive talks that will structure a “user-friendly” exit of the Konkola Copper Mines parent company, Vedanta Resources.

According to a statement released, Thursday, by First Secretary Press and Tourism at the Zambian Mission in India, Bangwe Naviley, Musukwa was speaking on the sidelines of President Edgar Lungu’s State visit to that country.

“Government has reiterated that the debacle about KCM is a subject of the court process. Mines and Minerals Development Minister Richard Musukwa says as a government of laws it is inclined to allow the due process of the law to take its course. He, however, says government is willing to listen to any progressive talks that structures a user-friendly exit mode for Vedanta,” the statement read in part.

“Mr Musukwa says it is now in public domain that Vedanta had extensively lost the social licence to operate in communities, such as Chililabombwe and Chingola, adding that the marriage has irretrievably broken down. He says the decision to liquidate KCM was premised on securing the company from total collapse and protecting the jobs of the people because Vedanta had in principle walked away owing to the negligence as evidenced by its inability to exploit and develop its primary sources of its ore materials and payment of contractors and suppliers and other obligations.”

Musukwa expressed his determination to ensure that a credible investor was quickly found to takeover KCM’s operations once the court processes were disposed off.

“The Cabinet Minister says government is determined, once the court processes are concluded, to urgently secure a credible investor in an open and transparent manner. Mr Musukwa says a new investor should have the capacity to inject fresh capital to operationalise the KDMP project and both underground and upper ore-body resources, which are believed to have huge life line, which will in-turn provide job security. He says the investors should lead to the transformation of the host communities in terms of infrastructure, such as roads, health and education,” read the statement.