The World Bank has urged the Zambian government to re-negotiate the mining development agreements for the country to benefit more from its mineral resources.
World Bank senior advisor on anti-corruption Eva Jolly said here Wednesday it was time for Zambia to re-look at the mining agreements for the country to accrue more revenue and for mining firms to demonstrate social responsibility.
Speaking at the African Parliamentarian Network Against Corruption (APNAC) Zambia Chapter workshop, Jolly said some of the mining development agreements entered into by the Zambian government and some mining companies have impacted negatively on the development of the country.
She noted that the country is not only being deprived of its natural resources but its citizens are also suffering from the mining pollution emissions.
Jolly has since called on the Zambian parliamentarians to be more proactive in investigating corrupt practices with a view to enhancing transparency and accountability in the administration of public resources.
Most of Zambia's copper mines have been privatized and sold to foreign companies at low prices in the 1990s after the industry hit a downturn worldwide.
Early this year, the Zambian government has suggested that mineral royalties fee, which is as low as 0.6 percent as compared to the average 3 percent in other countries, should be raised for the country to benefit from its natural resources.
Critics noted that the country had not harvested from the skyrocketing copper prices witnessed in the past few years as a result of the country's preferential policies towards wooing foreign investors.