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New grinding plant opens in Zimbabwe

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World Cement,

A new 0.4 million tpy grinding plant has begun production in Zimbabwe, according to local media reports. The new plant is operating as Livetouch Cement and is owned by Chinese company, Mortal Investments Manufacturing.

The Redcliff plant becomes the fourth cement producer in the southern African country after regional major, PPC, Lafarge Zimbabwe, part of the Switzerland-based Lafarge Holcim, and Chinese company, Sino-Zimbabwe.

The plant is currently sourcing clinker from other producers, said Dongning Wang, Managing Director of Livetouch.

PPC also recently opened a new grinding plant in Harare, its third location in the Zimbabwe. The 0.7 million tpy, US$82 million plant will grind clinker transported by rail from PPC’s Bulawayo cement plant.

Lafarge Zimbabwe operates a 0.45 million tpy plant in Harare, while Sino-Zimbabwe’s plant in Gweru has production capacity of 0.25 million tpy.

According to Livetouch’s Dongning, the Redcliff plant is currently producing at 70% capacity on a trial basis. There are also plans to expand the company’s operations into clinker production.

“We are now negotiating with the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development for limestone deposits,” said Dongning. “Under phase two, we will set up another factory close to the deposits to producer clinker.”

Zimbabwe’s cement capacity currently far outruns its cement demand with producers exporting excess production to neighbouring countries. Last year, Zimbabwe’s cement industry called on the government to impose tariffs on cement imports into the country, accusing importers of undercutting local production.

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