Belarus extends US$7 million equipment facility to Allied Timbers

By ZBC Reporter
STATE-OWNED timber processing firm, Allied Timbers will this year receive equipment worth seven million United States dollars from Belarus in line with its recapitalisation strategy.
Allied Timbers, which had been rocked by a spate of financial irregularities and viability problems, is on a recovery trajectory.
Speaking in Harare this Monday, the firm’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr Remigio Nenzou said following agreements concluded last year between Zimbabwe and Belarus, the utility is now expecting to receive equipment from the Eurasian country.
“The equipment is definitely expected to unlock value in our operations and create that viable platform for profits,” he said.
Mr Nenzou says with the government being the key shareholder the recapitalisation plan is aimed at increasing exports and reviving ailing units.
“The outlook is all about identifying all those aspects which we think can have a positive impact in our operations,” highlighted Nenzou.
Government intends to partially privatise the utility to raise more capital, and reduce its exposure on funding. Allied Timbers has been reeling under low capacity utilisation over the years, owing to obsolete machinery, low replanting rate and uncontrolled fires mainly caused by illegal settlers.
A report on the state of industries in Manicaland after Cyclone Idai indicates that Allied Timbers suffered the biggest loss estimated at US$4,5 million. Its operations involve plantations, harvesting, processing, marketing and selling of both pine and gum. Allied Timbers Zimbabwe’ operations are highly concentrated in the Eastern Highlands and Midlands areas of Zimbabwe. It specialises in sawn timber, poles, and other value-added timber-based products such as doors, flooring, trusses as well as honey.
Last year, Zimbabwe and Belarus signed deals worth US$350 million in areas of power, construction, transport and agriculture.