JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Indian-based metals and mining group Vedanta Resources said on Thursday it will fight any attempt by the Zambian government to sell its Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) business to third parties.
The protracted legal fight with Zambia began in May 2019, when Lusaka appointed a liquidator for KCM, which is jointly owned by Vedanta and Zambia’s state mining arm ZCCM-IH. Zambia, in taking that action, accused Vedanta of breaching its license.
In a statement responding to “rumours” that a Zambia government-appointed provisional liquidator is set to split KCM into two units and sell them, Vedanta said it would take “all necessary steps” to safeguard its interests in KCM.
Any potential buyer of the KCM assets would be party to an unlawful act, Vedanta said, because a Zambian court last month ordered a halt to liquidation proceedings. ZCCM-IH plans to appeal the ruling.
ZCCM-IH did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
Legal arguments over the case have been heard in both Zambia and South Africa.
Reporting by Helen Reid in Johannesburg and Zandi Shabalala in London; Editing by Bill Berkrot