Last month Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) committed to offset debts owed to local suppliers by the end of 2018 following a mutual agreement.
KCM General Manager Corporate Affairs Eugene Chungu said the amount paid is part of the outstanding arrears to business partners, including all Small and Medium Enterprises.
Chungu said progress has been made in settling arrears owed to suppliers and contractors.
“Well we did mention last time after an agreement with our business partners and all local contractors and suppliers, this is part of the commitment we made to offset the debts owed. Yes we are still on course and we still remain committed to completing the whole amount,” Chungu said.
He said the company will continue to support the growth of Small Medium Entrepreneurs to ensure they grow in their operations.
“The build-up in arrears has been as a result of several factors, including poor acceptance of the new business model by some stakeholders resulting in slow integration of business partners in company operations, low production at Konkola mine, high cost of energy and challenges in unlocking the VAT refunds,” Chungu said