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Harnessing Resource Revenues for Prosperity in Zambia

  • Christopher Adam
  • Anthony Simpasa

This paper examines the macroeconomic management of Zambia’s natural resource endowment over the past century. We describe how the state has adopted different strategies to secure a share of the rents from copper mining, how these strategies have affected incentives for exploration and production and how the associated macroeconomic policy regimes have shaped the value and distribution of the natural resource rents. We focus principally on the shift from public back to private ownership and control of the sector that took place at the end of the 1990s and on how the terms of the privatization affected the impact of the commodity price boom of 2003-08 on the domestic economy. We suggest that while the state and people of Zambia captured a nugatory share of the rents accruing from this boom, high levels of investment in the sector, combined with recent reforms to the mining taxation regime and in the conduct of macroeconomic policy have left Zambia better-placed to benefit from future growth in the copper sector.

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Paper provided by Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford in its series OxCarre Working Papers with number 036.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:036
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  1. Stephen O’Connell & Christopher Adam & Edward Buffie, 2008. "Aid and Fiscal Instability," CSAE Working Paper Series 2008-18, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
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