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New production line at Italcementi’s Devnya Cement begins operations

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World Cement,

With the activation of the new kiln, operations have begun on the new production line at the Devnya Cement plant, Italcementi Group’s Bulgarian arm, located near the port of Varna in eastern Bulgaria. Italcementi entered the Bulgarian market in 1998 with the acquisition of Devnya Cement, followed in 1999 by the acquisition of Vulkan Cement. In 2013, the Group reported revenue totalling €59 million in Bulgaria.

The completion of the Devnya project will allow the Group to consolidate its operations in Bulgaria, where it also operates the Vulkan grinding centre in Dimitrovgrad, and boost its export capacity due to the plants proximity to the port of Varna West, which allows the company access to all the countries on the Black Sea and on the eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea.

“This operation, which flanks the Rezzato revamp in Italy, completes the strategic investment programme to strengthen the Group in Europe,” said Carlo Pesenti, Italcementi Group Chief Executive Officer. “With one of the largest investments in Bulgaria in the last 25 years, we have improved the industrial efficiency of our production facility and ensured alignment with the best technologies to safeguard the environment. The new plant will enable us to respond to demand on the domestic market and from the neighboring areas in Eastern Europe.”

The revamp of the plant began in April 2012 and required an investment of more than €160 million. Once the current tests and commissioning stage have been completed on all the systems, the plant will be fully operational by early 2015. The new facility is fully equipped with best available technologies and uses a dry process line, which can produce around 4000 tpd of clinker, for an annual output of around 1.5 million t of cement. This makes the facility one of the largest plants of its type in Europe.

Special attention has been given to energy efficiency at the plant, which is also equipped to use alternative fuels such as RDF and biomass, and to environmental impact mitigation systems, which ensure a significant reduction in carbon emissions. The Group’s commitment to Sustainable Development policies, which also underpin this investment, has won Devnya Cement Ministry of the Environment recognition as ‘Green Business 2014’. The plant has also received awards in the ‘Investor of the Year’ and ‘Investor in Human Capital’ categories.

Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling

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