South Africa’s PPC Ltd has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Barnet Group sprl in the Democratic Republic of Congo. PPC plans to invest US$230 million in a greenfield project in the country, comprising a 1 million tpa cement plant and associated quarry. The site is located 20 km from Kimpese in the west of DRC. The partnership with local firm Barnet Group, as well as the company’s Chairman, Jean Saidi Bamanisa, will help PPC to gain a deeper understanding of the cement market in DRC. Bamanisa is also the Honorary Secretary of the Federation of Congolese Companies, as well as Governor of the Oriental Province of DRC.
The country’s government is increasing its focus on infrastructure projects, and the DRC Minister of Industry and Small and Medium Enterprises recently encouraged South African firms to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the new special economic zone (SEZ). Annual cement consumption in DRC stands at 16 kg per capita, currently the lowest in Africa.
“This investment is another of PPC’s commitments to invest in sub-Saharan Africa and we are very confident about the DRC. 22% of PPC’s revenue comes from outside South Africa, at present, but the target is to increase this to 40% by our 2016 financial year. We look forward to a growing contribution and partnership with the DRC in the years ahead,” said CEO of PPC, Ketso Gordhan.
PPC has been increasing its presence across Africa. In 2012 it acquired a stake in Ethiopia’s Habesha Cement and Rwanda’s Cimerwa. The cement producer also announced plans to invest in a 1 million tpa plant in Harare, Zimbabwe.
Adapted from press release by Louise Fordham
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/africa-middle-east/01102013/ppc_signs_mou_with_barnet_group_drc_237/