By Brecken Branstrator
The Zambia Revenue Authority has closed its investigation on Gemfields subsidiary Kagem Mining Limited regarding alleged tax evasion. Pictured here is the Kagem mining site.
London—The Zambia Revenue Authority has cleared Gemfields subsidiary Kagem Mining Limited of any wrongdoing following a recent investigation into alleged tax evasion.

The ZRA launched the investigation in August, serving two search warrants during an unannounced visit to the emerald mine. They were issued against Kagem and Limpopo Polygraphs, a South African company that conducts periodic polygraph testing at the site.

The warrants authorized the ZRA to take a range of documents and files, including those allegedly “used by Kagem Mining Ltd./Limpopo Polygraphs CC to evade the payment of value added tax, income tax, withholding tax and other taxes.”

According to a press release from Gemfields, which holds a 75 percent stake in the Kagem emerald mine, the ZRA advised them this week that the matters into which it was looking have been “suitably addressed.” They added there were no findings of wrongdoing or late payment by either Kagem or Limpopo, so no penalties were levied. 

The ZRA’s investigation is now closed.

According to a Business Day story about the news that quoted mining analyst John Meyer, the investigation was part of a larger effort by the Zambian government to look into the tax affairs of foreign miners in the country, embarking on an audit of all the major companies this year.

Concurrent with the news about the investigation, Gemfields also released the results of its recent auction in Singapore offering high, medium and commercial grade rough rubies exclusively in untreated form.

The auction reached revenues of $55.3 million, selling 96 percent of the carats on offer at an average price of $84.32 per carat.

The 41 Gemfields auctions held since July 2009—30 of which offered Zambian emeralds and 11 of which offered Mozambican rubies—have now surpassed $1 billion in combined revenue.

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