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Kazakh-French cooperation leads to successful dry method cement production

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World Cement,

The Jambyl Cement plant near Mynaral in the Zhambyl region, the first in Kazakhstan to use the dry method for cement production, is currently the largest facility in this category. The joint Kazakh-French project, managed by Vicat Group, produces approximately 1.4 million tpy of binder to cover 15% of internal demand and exports a portion to neighbouring countries.

Plant construction began in 2008 and was launched three years later.

“In the strategy of internationalisation, Vicat Group has been looking with interest at Kazakhstan since 2005 or earlier. Many prospective projects were examined and our technical and financial teams worked locally for a couple of years in assessing how to better set up our first cement plant in Kazakhstan,” said Pietro Cala, Vicat Group Country Manager in Kazakhstan and Jambyl Cement Director.

In late 2007, Vicat Group became part of a project to establish a cement plant in Mynaral, a village on the shores of Balkhash Lake 400 km from the capital, Almaty.

The site was considered to be ideally located along the main Almaty-Astana route and, to date, has offered easy access to the country’s main construction markets. “At the beginning of 2011, the plant started operating and soon the company stepped into the market by offering first-class products very appreciated by the most demanding customers,” added Carla. “Very quickly, cement produced and sold by Jambyl Cement became popular and covered 15% of the country consumption.”

The plant produces 400 and 500 quality grade portland cement using the dry method, according to Vicat Group’s website. Compared to the wet method, which is widely used in Kazakhstan, the dry method promises to generate substantial energy savings and represents the best practices for the environment.

Since its opening, more than 250 direct jobs and at least 450 indirect employment opportunities have been created for local citizens.

The company is investing heavily in recruiting and training local specialists, as well as building apartments in the surrounding area which allow employees to live closer to work. The move is in line with Vicat’s corporate culture, a long-standing tradition dating to 1817 when French engineer Luis Vicat invented artificial cement.

“Our group has provided not only financial resources and technical skills for this project, but also organisation, management culture, and international relationships,” concluded Cala. “We think we make decisions and we act having only long-term objectives in mind and we do care about resources and sustainability”.

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Cement news 2018