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From Minerals to Beer, Congo Finance Minister Hunts for Cash

  • Government reviewing mining contracts, ensuring tax compliance
  • Kazadi sees potential for international bond sale by 2023
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Photographer: Cole Burston/Bloomberg
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The Democratic Republic of Congo is intent on revisiting mining contracts, rescinding and reselling unused oil permits and boosting taxes on beer to fund its development plans, according to Nicolas Kazadi, the country’s finance minister.  

A country the size of Western Europe with 80 million inhabitants, Congo had a budget of just $4 billion last year and poverty is rampant, despite its vast riches of copper, cobalt and other natural resources. The government needs more money to meet President Felix Tshisekedi’s pledges to provide free education and expand access to health care and the task of raising it has fallen to Kazadi, 55, an economist who previously served in the central bank and finance ministry.