ESDF, Asamer form joint venture to develop Libyan cement industry

ESDF, Asamer form joint venture to develop Libyan cement industry
Published: 06 October 2008

As part of Libya’s efforts to meet the ever increasing demand for cement, the Economic Social Development Fund (ESDF) and Asamer Group, an Austrian building company, have joined forces and established in October 2007 the Libyan Cement manufacturing joint venture company (JLCC).

JLCC has since successfully purchased Cement plants in eastern Libya and has embarked on a huge refurbishment, modernisation and upgrading program that is expected to increase of production without ignoring protecting the environment, a press release by the company said.

"The Great Libyan Arab Jamahiriya has undertaken a tremendous infrastructure and development program. The Libyan Government is currently undertaking massive infrastructural projects to build and update airports, harbors, housing projects, hotels business towers and other major projects that are currently underway in various regions of the country," the press released said.

"Libya is a young flourishing wealthy country. Its wealth is being carefully invested by wise and strong leadership. Libya has invited international leading companies to achieve its goal of renovation and modernization in close partnership with the Libyan leadership," it added.

Asamer Group said its aim was to pursue, with a Libyan partnership, a sustainable strategy within LCC (Libyan Cement Company) based on upgrading, modernising and investing in cement plants. This strategy objectives include the increase of cement output, overcome current cement shortage, and guarantee sufficient cement supply at reasonable prices in the near future.

"To facilitate this process, the Libyan government established the Economic Social Development Fund (ESDF). In October 2007 these two partners established the Libyan Cement Manufacturing Joint Venture Company ("JLCC") with a major contribution by Asamer Group.

Eventually JLCC purchased 90 percent of the shares of the Libyan Cement Company (LCC) in February 2008, 10 percent of the shares remain with the employees of LCC," the company’s statement explained.

According to the joint venture agreement, Asamer Group has the management power to upgrade and develop the cement industry owned by LCC in the eastern part of Libya.

LCC owns and operates three plants in Benghazi (0.8Mta of OPC), Hawari (1Mta of SRC) and El Fatayah (1Mta of OPC) with each plant operating two production lines for a total of six. All plants are located in the eastern part of Libya and supply the local market, the statement said.

Currently, the individual production lines do not utilize the full capacity and suffer from high dust emissions. The new owner is primarily working on environmental improvements and on developing the plant’s operations.

All units urgently require an upgrade and several machines need to be replaced.

The new owner is planning to invest EUR72m in the first phase of modernisation, mainly focusing on the environmental improvements as well as machine substitutions in order to reach the production of 3Mta by 2009.

Due to the growing demand for cement in Libya which is caused by a tremendous infrastructure program, Asamer decided to start new cement line projects in course with the joint venture company program to double the production capacity by 2012.

This should be achieved by the implementation of a new production line with the capacity of an additional 3Mta of cement.