Lovemore Zigara Midlands Correspondent
SINO Zimbabwe Cement Company (SZCC) has announced plans to set up a building industrial park comprising construction sector-related industries in Gweru.
The company’s managing director Wang Yong said their shareholders (Zimbabwe and Chinese governments) have agreed to the setting up of the project.
SZCC is located 33 kilometres east of Gweru at Indiva Farm.
Wang said the industrial park would go a long way in boosting the country’s economy and will create thousands of jobs locally.
“The farm on which Sino Zimbabwe Cement Company is located is big enough and we feel that there’s need to create a building industrial park. The idea is coming from our shareholders, the Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe (IDCZ) and China Building Materials Corporation (CBMC).
“I recently had a meeting with Mike Ndudzo (IDCZ general manager) who said the idea of the park would be tabled before Parliament. We’ll soon start a brick and tile project linked to the construction industry which will go a long way in creating employment,” he said.
Wang said the cordial relations between Zimbabwe and China should expedite the setting up of the project which he said would start as soon as all the paperwork was completed but did not give a specific timeframe.
CBMC parent company, Sinoma, which has also partnered with the IDCZ, has also announced that the construction of a $50 million brick and tile plant in Gweru would start next year.
The project is expected to create 500 jobs during construction stage.
Under the shareholding arrangement for the brick and tile plant, Sinoma will have a 50 percent controlling stake while CBMC will have 20 percent while the balance would be owned by the IDCZ on behalf of the Zimbabwean government.
Sinoma is expected to inject an initial $20 million in the first phase of a three phased project in which production is expected to peak to 100 million of bricks and tiles per year.
The plant will rely on quarry shell and coal ash for raw materials which are by-products of SZCC operations and is earmarking to export the bricks some which are used to line blast furnaces into the region especially South Africa.