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VEDL - Vedanta News Story

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Sector
Basic Materials
Size
Large Cap
Market Cap £13.46bn
Enterprise Value £15.35bn
Revenue £9.74bn
Position in Universe 41st / 3159

UPDATE 1-Zambia mines minister takes aim at Konkola liquidation

Mon 20th September, 2021 7:04pm
(Adds Vedanta CEO comment, final paragraph)
    LUSAKA, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Zambia's mines minister on
Monday criticised the previous administration's push to
liquidate Vedanta's  VDAN.NS  Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) unit,
which sparked years of wrangling.
    Vedanta and the government have been in a legal dispute over
the mine and smelter since May 2019 when Zambia, which owns 20%
of KCM through state mining investment firm ZCCM-IH, handed
control of the business to a liquidator.
    Paul Kabuswe made the comments during a tour of Zambia's
copperbelt, in a further indication that President Hichilema's
new administration will seek to roll back state involvement in
the mining sector, the engine of Zambia's economy.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2QG0O1
    "We must never, ever, bring politics in(to) the private
sector," Kabuswe told a meeting at KCM, which circulated on
video on social media and was verified by the mines ministry. 
    "Part of the mess that we are in is because of that
liquidation process," he added.
    State-appointed provisional liquidator Milingo Lungu split
KCM into two units, KCM SmelterCo Limited and Konkola Mineral
Resources Limited, which he was looking to sell.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2K717V
    But any potential buyers were wary of legal complications,
with Vedanta calling the split illegal, and arbitration between
Vedanta and Zambia ongoing in London. 
    Kabuswe said he was disappointed Lungu was not at the
meeting at KCM. 
    Lungu told Reuters he had not received any official
communication of a meeting taking place on Monday.
    Vedanta earlier this month said it wanted to open a dialogue
with ZCCM and was committed to investing $1.5 billion into KCM.
    Sunil Duggal, Group CEO of Vedanta said "we are keen to
resolve the current situation at KCM, and work alongside ZCCM,
the government and all stakeholders to help build the mine back
into one of the world's leading copper producers."  

 (Reporting by Chris Mfula in Lusaka; Additional reporting by
Helen Reid in Johannesburg; Writing by Helen Reid; Editing by
Jan Harvey and Alexander Smith)
 ((Helen.Reid@thomsonreuters.com; +27 66 156 5214;))
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