(Bloomberg) – Zambia’s plan to sell the copper mines it seized last year from billionaire Anil Agarwal’s Vedanta Resources Ltd. is bogged down in legal challenges that are discouraging buyers.
Arbitration between Vedanta and Zambia will proceed in London in January, after the government alleged the company lied about expansion plans and paid too little tax.
That leaves cash-starved Konkola Copper Mines Plc in the hands of a court-appointed liquidator, with the prospect of a protracted legal process deterring potential investors.
“Investors obviously want to know the outcome of the arbitration and the other legal cases before they proceed,” Barnaby Mulenga, permanent secretary in Zambia’s ministry of mines, said in an interview.
Zambia’s government has more pressing priorities, after bondholders rejected its request for debt relief.
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