A Lusaka court on Thursday ruled Vedanta Resources could not be included in proceedings to wind up its Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) business in Zambia.
Zambia’s dispute with Vedanta began in May when the government of Africa’s second biggest copper producer appointed a liquidator to run KCM, saying it had breached its licence.
The row has intensified concerns among international miners about resource nationalism in Africa.
Zambian firm ZCCM-IH holds around 20% of KCM, while Vedanta Resources, part-owner of the Mumbai-listed Vedanta group of companies, holds a majority stake.
Vedanta has said it will seek international arbitration and has been fighting to be represented at the court proceedings, which so far have only included ZCCM-IH and KCM.
High Court judge Annes Banda-Bobo said the court was unable to “order a joinder of the intended second respondent to the proceedings” but granted Vedanta leave to appeal.
She said Vedanta had not filed a “notice of intention” required by the court.