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Zambia says to waive VAT rule on mining firms, refund $600 mln

LUSAKA, Aug 26 (Reuters) - Zambia plans to waive a rule requiring mining companies and other exporters to produce import certificates from destination countries because it is impracticable, finance minister Alexander Chikwanda said on Tuesday.

Chikwanda said the ministry planned to negotiate a staggered repayment of the $600 million in VAT it has withheld from copper mining companies because of failure to produce the import certificates.

(Reporting by Chris Mfula; Editing by Ed Stoddard and Joe Brock)