Kagem signs 2022-2023 collective agreement with unions

LUSAKA, ZAMBIA – Kagem Mining Limited (Kagem), which operates the largest emerald mine in the world, in Lufwanyama District of the Copperbelt Province in Zambia, has signed a collective agreement with unions under which unionised employees will receive a 10% increase in basic salary for 2022, followed by a further 10% increase for 2023 across the board and those sitting between the grade notches will move up to the next notch.

The company is owned 75% by London-based Gemfields in partnership with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), which holds 25% on behalf of the Zambian Government.

The collective agreement, which has been approved by the Labour Commissioner (Lusaka),  followed successful negotiations between management and representatives of the Mine Workers Union of Zambia (MUZ) and the National Union of Miners & Allied Workers (NUMAW), in which it was also agreed to enhance the company pension contribution from 20% to 25% of basic pay, bringing the effective salary increase to 15% for 2022 and 2023, and the overall increase to 22.5% over the next two years.

Kagem General Manager Sanjeev Kumar commended union representatives for the efficient and professional manner in which negotiations were conducted and said: “Having achieved harmonious industrial relations through this collective bargaining agreement, I am sure that Kagem, its workers and the government will all benefit.”

He continued, “The agreement will provide workers with improved living standards and greater job security. Together we will strive to achieve our strategic and commercial goals and remain a world-leading supplier of emeralds.”

The agreement was also welcomed by MUZ President Joseph Chewe, who commended Kagem for its commitment in improving the welfare of its employees and said: “We can only encourage the workers, as the leadership from the union, to continue walking along with the company to succeed as they continue to give us jobs and business to the community of Zambia. We also value your existence and the relationship that we continue to enjoy.

I think as a union we will continue to be positive towards the operations. Because if operations fail, then there will be no employment. So, my colleagues from the workers, let’s continue to engage the company on issues the workers raise so that we can have a company that is profitable, that is able to look after the workers’ welfare.”



Gillian Langmead
Langmead & Baker Ltd
Tel: +260 979 060705

Head office
Helena Choudhury
Head of PR and Communications
Tel: +44 (0)207 518 3420


Kagem responsible sourcing highlights

  • Kagem is committed to ensuring that the community continues to benefit positively from its operations through various sustainability programmes focused on alleviating poverty and aligned with government policies, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Vision 2030
  • The mine has spent more than USD 2.75 million on community projects, including:
    • Rehabilitation of the 18.7 km road connecting Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s chiefdoms from Kandole to Kafwaya village in Lufwanyama district
    • Construction of the Nkana Health Centre
    • Construction and equipping of a new Chapula Secondary School
    • Construction of new buildings at Chapula Primary School
    • Building of teachers’ accommodation at Kapila Community School
    • Support for the Blessing, Kapila Green Farms, Twende and Twasanta projects including distribution of farming inputs to Chief Lumpuma
    • Improvements to Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s palaces
    • Support towards Covid-19 efforts including the donation of relief items to Nkana Health Centre and other health facilities in the Lufwanyama
  • Kagem’s USD 345,000 industry training initiative is sponsoring 12 students from the geological and mining engineering departments at the School of Mines at the University of Zambia (UNZA) and Copperbelt University (CBU) over a period of eight years.
  • Kagem currently provides more than 1,100 direct jobs.

About Kagem Mining

Kagem Mining Ltd, based in Lufwanyama, is believed to be the world’s single largest producing emerald mine. Kagem is 75% owned by Gemfields, in a model partnership with the Zambian government.

Kagem aims to emulate the values of Gemfields and operate in a way that contributes positively to the national economy, while taking a leading role in modernising the coloured gemstone sector and building sustainable livelihoods for the communities around the mine. Kagem believes that coloured gemstones should be mined and marketed by championing three key values – transparency, legitimacy and integrity.

Gemfields is a world-leading supplier of responsibly sourced coloured gemstones. In addition to Kagem, Gemfields is the operator and 75% owner of Montepuez Ruby Mining in Mozambique (at one of the most significant recently discovered ruby deposits in the world), as well as bulk sampling licences in Ethiopia, amongst others. 

Gemfields has developed a proprietary grading system and a pioneering auction and trading platform to provide a consistent supply of coloured gemstones to the global jewellery market.

Fabergé – an iconic name with an exceptional heritage – is a member of the Gemfields Group. This enables Gemfields to improve its positioning, perception and consumer awareness of responsibly sourced coloured gemstones through the beauty of design and craftsmanship. 

Gemfields’ responsibly sourced gemstones are the preferred choice for show pieces created by many world-renowned luxury houses and cutting-edge designers.

Gemfields: Gemfields.com | Investors | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube
Fabergé: Fabergé.com | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube
Kagem Mining: LinkedIn
Montepuez Ruby Mining: LinkedIn

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