The price of copper on the International market has continued to rise and is expected to reach the US $7,000 threshold a tonne. It is currently trading at US $6, 791 per tonne on the London Metal Exchange.
This means that more Dollars and other hard currencies will continue flowing into Zambia. This, in addition to the Bank of Zambia’s mopping of the Kwacha from circulation is what is making the Kwacha strong.
The Kwacha is currently trading just over K9 to one United States dollar.
That the price of copper is rising is good. But how are Zambians benefiting?
The miners who were fired when the price of copper slumped have not been reinstated. Maybe others got other jobs or died of depression but the mines have not employees corresponding numbers.
In any case, whatever benefits that might have been garnered from rising copper prices, it has been negatived by hikes in electricity. Remember Zero plus zero is zero. And rising prices on the London Metal Exchange is certainly not due to Edgar Lungu or Felix Mutati’s good work.
For sure the strengthening of the Kwacha is not beneficial to most Zambians as it is actually ‘killing’ small scale cross border trading. And these are many as they includes shop owners who buy merchandise from those who actually cross the border. Zambian cross border traders are finding it impossible to trade as merchandise from other countries has become unaffordable.
Most cross border traders import stuff from South Africa, Botswana, Namibia and counterfeit stuff from Tanzania. With the Kwacha artificially stronger than currencies of these manufacturing countries, it is unprofitable to sale in Zambia.
Another example involves those boys who sale cars from Botswana or Durban. You buy a Toyota Corolla for 30, 000 Pula or 35, 000 Rands, then the notorious ZRA charges you K25, 000 for importing the car. This means you will have spent more than k60, 000 to bring the car into Zambia. How much will you sale it since most Zambians do not have liquid cash? The Bank of Zambia is withholding the Kwacha just to keep up appearances that the Kwacha is strengthening.
The only people who are benefitting from the improved copper prices in London are PF officials and those Indians and other crooks with direct connection to Edgar Lungu. This is because, using the strong
By the way and this is very important. If our copper is now fetching more money and we have more Dollars coming into our country as Felix Mutati and others are saying, why are we still pursuing the IMF for a loan?