Cement News

Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe’s new mill to be operational by year end


Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe Ltd (Fossil Mines Pvt Ltd) said it will continue to increase production of its products to meet the demands associated with the growth of the economy, with the targets set in the National Development Strategy 1 usefully giving a strong estimate of the size of the local market each year. This follows approved an initial US$25m investment that will go towards increasing cement and agricultural lime capacity and an automated dry mortar plant for the local company Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe Ltd.

Lafarge Cement Zimbawbe CEO, Geoffrey Ndugwa, was keen to show his firm’s readiness to boost investment and output during a visit to the plant by the industry and commerce parliamentary portfolio committee to check on the progress on the installation of the vertical roller mill, which is expected to double the company’s cement capacity when it commissions. 

Mr Ndugwa said despite going through a rough patch towards the end of last year, the company remains optimistic about buoyant operations going forward. “The overall market demand continues to grow driven by the segment of individual home builders as well as the ongoing major Government infrastructure development projects,” he said. “The company is confident that volumes will recover and grow as the availability of cement stabilises, especially after the new vertical roller mill start-up in the second quarter.”

He said the late resumption of the company’s mill, which briefly stopped operations following plant collapse in October last year, led to a 55 per cent decline in the firm’s first quarter volume output. Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe restarted operations at the plant in February following the cement mill house roof collapse in a development that halted the production in the intervening period.

He said the expansion, which was accorded National Project Status and has been conducted in two phases, will be completed by the end of this year. Phase 1 of the project, which is valued a US$2m, was the dry mortar plant commissioned last year, while Phase 2 is the vertical cement mill valued at US$14m and which is now at the commissioning stage.

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