The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) will clear all VAT refunds owed to mines by the end of this year, ZRA commissioner general Kingsley Chanda has stated. As at 8 December 2015, government owed mining companies a total of K5.25 billion in VAT refunds, with the biggest creditors being Kansanshi Mining Plc (K1.89 billion), Mopani Copper Mines (K1.69 billion) and Konkola Copper Mines (K1.24 billion). The outstanding VAT refunds have been put forward by the mines as one of the reasons for their downsizing in recent years. The refunds accumulated due to the contentious VAT rule 18 (see Fact Box). However, Chanda explained that due to “increased levels of compliance and submission of correct documentation” the ZRA has been paying an average of K700 million per month to liquidate the refunds. He estimated that the ZRA now owes mining companies about K1.5 billion, which “we hope to liquidate before the end of this year”.