By ZBC Reporter
Zimbabwe Chemical refineries (ZIMCHEM) a subsidiary of the steel-making giant ZISCO Steel is eying an increase in capacity utilisation from the current 10% to 86% in a move likely to boost the country’s export receipts.
The chemical refinery company which is realising an average of $1.2 million in exports receipts annually is seeking $3 million to recapitalise and reach its intended target.
ZIMCHEM Acting General manager, Mr Tendai Shoko, took time to explain their revival strategy once they get the necessary funding.
“We are currently looking at sprucing up our plant. One of our plants has not been functional as it has been under care and maintenance,” he said.
“We are working on a plan to ensure that all the tar that is produced at Hwange Company comes this side for further processing.
“We are working with the new ZISCO steel board and management to make sure that we revive the batteries and pick up production.”
Shoko added that the revival of ZISCO Steel will come in handy in their recapitalisation matrix as it will ensure availability of raw materials for their operations.
“After the closure of ZISCO Steel batteries and Hwange batteries which we were relying on for raw materials, we are currently getting them from coke oven batteries which are in Hwange.
“However there are three at the moment and they are only able to give us up to one thousand tonnes of raw materials a month as the bulk is being exported to our competitors in South Africa.
“We would like ZISCO steel to come back online so that our full capacity can be realised. ZISCO steel alone was able to supply us with 70 percent of requirements which is about 3000 tonnes of crater and 1000 tonnes of benzyl for our refinery plant.”
Efforts for the revival of ZISCO steel are already underway with an inter-ministerial taskforce tasked with the mandate on a hunt for a possible investor as a long term strategy while some subsidiaries like BIMCO are already being resuscitated.