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President Mnangagwa commissions US$7.3 million ethanol facilities

Story by Bruce Chahwanda

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has commissioned a six million litre ethanol storage and handling facility at the National Oil Infrastructure Company (NOIC) in Harare.

This comes amid indications that neighbouring countries are looking at utilising the company’s infrastructure across the country for fuel supplies.

In a bid to ensure smooth ethanol blending, the government through the National Oil Infrastructure Company (NOIC) invested in the development of fuel handling and distribution infrastructure.

The two ethanol storage and handling facilities were installed with a capacity of three million litres each through strategic partnerships.

Officially commissioning the facility in Mabvuku, Harare this Tuesday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said the project will boost the handling capacity of ethanol which regional countries are willing to use.

“This flagship infrastructure project, which was constructed at a cost of US$7.3 million, consists of storage and handling tanks with a capacity of six million litres as well as attendant ancillary facilities. As a result, our national storage and handling capacity of ethanol is set to increase by over 100 percent from 5.2 million litres to about 11.2 million litres. These are spread across the country at Msasa, Feruka and Bulawayo depots. South Africa and Botswana are eager we facilitate the supply of fuel to them through our infrastructure and another pipeline to supply northern parts of South Africa,” said the President.

President Mnangagwa said infrastructure developments are key in the target to be an effective and efficient land-linked regional industrial hub.

He said, “To this end, the Mabvuku depot has not been dedicated to the redelivery of fuel to surrounding markets, resulting in increased efficiency. Consequently, players in the fuel transport sector servicing the regional countries have largely been loaded out at this key installation. This has enabled the National Oil Infrastructure Company of Zimbabwe to achieve a record volume of throughput of fuel pumping on the pipeline of 1.93 billion litres in 2022. Over and above this, and in line with our Devolution and Decentralisation Policy, NOIC has acquired a depot in Bulawayo to facilitate the bulk dispensing of fuel to clients in the southern region.”

The Head of State applauded NOIC for upgrading the Feruka pipeline to ensure that it reaches five billion litres in capacity by 2025.

President Mnangagwa added saying, “I also applaud the National Oil Company of Zimbabwe for completing the first phase of the project to construct holding facilities for 2000 metric tons of Liquefied Petroleum Gas. This has increased the company’s storage capacity of Liquefied Petroleum Gas to over 5000 metric tons, thereby ensuring sufficient buffer stocks and averting stock-outs,”

“Riding on the long-standing, mutually beneficial relationship between Zimbabwe and Mozambique, the National Oil Company and Companhia do Pipeline Mozambique – Zimbabwe Limitada (CPMZ) are synchronising the capacity upgrade of Feruka Pipeline, for seamless operations and improved efficiencies. The ongoing pipeline upgrade will culminate in an increased capacity of 3 billion litres, up from the current 2.19 billion litres of liquid fuel per annum. This will be further ramped up to 5 billion litres per annum in 2025.”

Zimbabwe has been on a growth path in relation to infrastructure development through the use of locally available resources.

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