Zambia’s copper belt reels from global crisis–downturn in commodities trade leads to devastating mine closures

by Karin Brulliard

The Indian-owned Konkola Copper Mines in Zambia employs more than 12,000 people, but it plans to lay off nearly 1,100 to cut costs. The mining industry employs 10 percent of Zambia’s workforce. Photo: Karin Brulliard/Washington Post)

LUANSHYA, Zambia — The global economic meltdown swept into this company town and took down the copper mine in January. It left in its wake a crisis measured in unsold tomatoes at the market, empty stomachs and desperate people lined up outside Chishimba Kambwili’s pink house each morning.

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