Orascom Construction Industries announced that rehabilitation of the 2.3Mta year Tasluja cement factory in Northern Iraq has been completed for a total investment cost of US$70m.
An OCI-led consortium was awarded a tax-exempt 12-year lease for the Tasluja cement plant located near the city of Suleimaniyah in the Kurtdistan region of Iraq in November 2004. The OCI consortium includes the Farouk Rasool Group, a prominent industrial group in Northern Iraq.
Under the terms of the contract, the OCI consortium is responsible for the rehabilitation, operation and maintenance of the plant and receives a right of first refusal on any potential privatization of the plant. Since the award date, OCI has increased its stake in the leasing vehicle from 51% to 60%. The Tasluja plant has two dry process production lines supplied by ThyssenKrupp Polysius with a designed production capacity of 2.3 million tons annually. An OCI Construction Group / Polysius team completed the rehabilitation project.
OCI Chief Executive Officer, Nassef Sawiris commented "We are committed to raise our production capacity in Northern Iraq to over 5Mt during 2007. We hope the new capacity in the Tasluja plant and the Bazian greenfield currently under construction (3Mta) will help alleviate the inconsistent imports coming into Iraq and contribute to the reconstruction process. The rehabilitation process was a difficult one given the severely battered condition of the plant 2 years ago but our technical team has delivered once again." Mr. Farouk Rasool commented "the successful commissioning of the Tasluja plant is an important milestone in the industrial development of the region having created numerous employment opportunities and brought in foreign direct investment."