Cement producer, Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe Limited is working on expanding its cement milling and Dry Mortar Mix (DMX) plant.
Company Secretary Flora Chinhaire says the business sees opportunities in the growth of the construction sector beyond 2020 despite the challenges faced in 2019.
“In this vein, Management has successfully concluded financing arrangements for a US$15 million facility to fund expansion cement milling capacity and DMX plant,” Chinhaire says.
“In addition, in order to mitigate the effect of erratic power supply, the business has embarked on alternative power supply to supplement ZESA generation as part of our expansion.”
Lafarge plans to expand with volumes for DMX excluding Agricultural Lime having recorded marked growth this year compared to the prior year according to the Secretary.
“The late kickoff of the financing arrangements for the government assisted ‘Smart Agriculture’ program has affected agricultural lime which is one of the main DMX products and its demand peaks during the agricultural preparation season,” Chinhaire explained.
“Management is actively driving production and logistics to ensure that the volumes committed to the program are fulfilled before the full onset of the rains.”
The company’s production output this year recorded a marginal 1% decline against prior year owing to plant reliability which encountered unplanned stoppages and power supply challenges according to the company secretary.
“The capex expansion program has been rolled out and the power generating unit is now on site whilst the DMX plant is being manufactured,” Chinhaire says.
” “Work on the cement milling expansion project will commence in January 2020.”