Zimbabwe: PPC's Harare plant is half-way complete

Zimbabwe: PPC's Harare plant is half-way complete
Published: 15 April 2016


The construction of a new cement plant by Pretoria Portland Cement (PPC) in Harare is progressing as planned and is now 55 per cent complete.

The plant is expected to produce 70.7Mta of cement when fully commissioned. This is in line with the South African parent company's strategy of growing its non-South African revenue from the current 21 per cent to at least 40 per cent before the end of this year.

Sources at PPC told the Financial Gazette this week that the plant would be operational before the end of the year. "Civil and structural construction is now more than 50 per cent complete," said one of the sources.

PPC Zimbabwe dominates the domestic cement market alongside Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe, a subsidiary of LafargeHolcim. The two command 90 per cent share of the local market, with Chinese-controlled Sino Zimbabwe holding the balance.

PPC Zimbabwe is currently operating at about 70 per cent capacity at its existing operations, producing around 1Mta of cement. It exports its products to Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique and its export business contributes about 20 per cent to the company's total turnover, although the figures fluctuate. The subsidiary has two operations in the country, one in Colleen Bawn in Matabeleland South and another in Bulawayo.

The cement maker recently commissioned phase one in the modernisation of its packaging and dispatch facility at the Bulawayo plant, which includes the installation of two palletiser units and a shrink-wrap machine. The new facility is served by the new factory warehouse, a dispatch office and weighbridges.
The final phase, which is underway, involves the construction of a new bulk loading facility.